Changing perceptions of the Pacific through art

An exhibition that challenges our perceptions and questions our understanding of Australia’s closest neighbours is on display at Logan Art Gallery.

“Pacific Storms” aims to overcome stereotypes of Pacific Island art by focusing on captivating the viewer and drawing attention to the Pacific culture seen through the eyes of Pacific artists.

The painting “Frigate Bird” or “Kasaga” in Fijian captured my attention with its intricate detail, use of colours and patterns that represent different villages and cultures of Melanesian background and the significance of the Frigate in the artwork.

Fijian artist Irami Buli has won awards in India and won recognition at his exhibitions in London and Tonga for his paintings of this particular bird.

“This seabird is so important to island culture as it tells a fisherman where he should drop his net, the Kasaga is also used as a messenger to fly a note on its leg to another fishermen or person on the island,” said Buli.

Fijian artist Irami Buli

The patterning on the birds signifies that it’s of Melanesian origins. The face represents Mother Nature looking down over the water and land below.

“Pacific Island nations are prone to storms, so I wanted people to see that through my depiction of the Kasaga flying over the land,” Buli told Newsbytes.

“To some this bird is a nuisance but to the people of the Pacific it is beautiful,” he said.

The exhibition is running until June 25.

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