Mai ngā kôrero ô neherā, e hui pālua – Kawika Aipa with Te Korowai Aroha

Mai ngā kôrero ô neherā, e hui pālua

From stories of old, come diverse realities

A collaboration between Hawaiian artist and Lomilomi practitioner Kawika Aipa and Porirua kaupapa Maori whanau-based community service organisation Te Korowai Aroha, Mai ngā kôrero ô neherā, e hui pālua (From stories of old, come diverse realities) is an “installation of mind, body and spirit” exploring traditional and contemporary indigenous bodywork and healing practices, from Aotearoa and Hawai’i cultures.

This is a project about the education and practice of cultural healing arts, connecting Polynesian peoples and others with their cultural practice. The project involves public demonstrations, hui/ talanoa/ kûkakûka/discussions and digital storytelling to capture the bodywork practice and artform that is Lomilomi (a Hawaiian massage tradition), and the synergies that exist between Aotearoa and Hawai’i, relating to cultural perceptions and misrepresentations of the Polynesian human form.

The project explores what traditional bodywork and healing practices contribute to our understanding of wellness, and how knowledge is embedded in the Polynesian human form, he ira tangata. The work honours the richness of narratives passed down as Polynesian taonga tuku iho (gifts from our ancestors) throughout the community of Porirua. These will be contributed to through the collection of contemporary community stories, lived experiences and aloha.