"Blackhead Beach" 2019
mixed media on canvas, 81 x 110cm
Her paintings reflect on the strong sense of spirituality the land has to Māori ”
"You are not alone Toroa" 2021
mixed media on canvas
Photography by Kaitlyn Gillelan.
These pieces are a continuation of her 2019 series titled "Te Manawa Ora" The Breath of Life.
Te Manawa Ora is a continuous theme in Moewai's work. Earth plays an important role in breathing life into the whenua she is painting through the lens of the Hei-Tiki. Moewai's paintings reflect on the strong sense of spirituality land has to Māori, as well as the powerful mauri present in the Hei-Tiki. Moewai paints with many different materials from the Earth treating each element as taonga themselves. Her work always begins by acknowledging the whenua. They are woven into the landscapes forming layers of whakapapa and connection back to her tīpuna.
The Hei-Tiki is an incredible taonga evoking memory of tīpuna to connect their wairua to people, and to the whenua. Moewai treasures her art work. She paints to feel closer to her ancestors and restore what has felt like a lost and broken identity in her Te Ao Māori world. She seeks knowledge and relationships to explore what being Māori means to her. Painting has been an outlet for Moewai to express these feelings. She creates meaning for lost taonga and taonga that is very much present in society today. Her Hei-Tiki outlines can be viewed as portal's of remembrance to past lives, and also current lives. These layers of whakapapa is a way for Moewai to feel grounded on her tūrangawaewae and connect with others to share her purpose of these taonga.
Moewai has created a different light to taonga, transitioning them into a new life, and bringing a compelling vision to the language of replacement.
Moewai's work is forever evolving and growing. She is continuously experimenting and trusting the process along the way. Her work reflects on her own personal journey she is on with her Māoritanga, her connections to her whakapapa and establishing a practice grounded in strong Māori values.
Stay up to date with Moewai on her instagram: moewaimarsh_art
"Ki a ū ki o papa pounamu nā o mātou tīpuna. Titiro ki te taumata o te moana hei oranga mō o mātou uri whakatupu,
Hold fast to the precious, enduring things of your ancestors. Gaze upon oceans which hold life for generations to come."