Rose and friends put their faith in karma

Auckland City Harbour News - - News - By Rhi­an­non Hor­rell

Trust­ing the laws of karma will bring un­known sur­prises for Mt Eden artist Rose Rowan and her creative col­leagues.

She is host­ing a Koha Ex­hi­bi­tion on Fri­day, where her works and those of seven other artists and one writer will be ex­changed for koha – the Maori word for a gift or do­na­tion.

Ms Rowan says it opens up the pos­si­bil­ity of things other than money be­ing ex­changed for the work – per­haps a cooked meal or a ser­vice.

“The idea came from the na­ture of in­spi­ra­tion and cre­ativ­ity – it just comes to us, we can’t com­mand it.

“That is a gift like koha and I was think­ing of how we could share that.”

She is un­sure what kind of things will be of­fered. “I’m open to what­ever it brings. I’m trust­ing the laws of karma. There is a risk.”

The 23-year-old says the other artists were sur­prised when she sug­gested the idea – some liked it while oth­ers were more cau­tious.

“They be­lieve in get­ting the work out there but don’t want to be ripped off.”

She en­cour­ages her col­leagues to use items they have hoarded over time, so it will be a form of re­cy­cling.

Ms Rowan says the ex­change means if a per­son gen­uinely likes one of the works, they won’t need hun­dreds of dol­lars to buy it.

“It is for peo­ple who just en­joy art.”

She says the ex­hi­bi­tion is ap­pro­pri­ate in a time when so­ci­ety tends to “freak out” about money.

She wants to show that art can en­rich lives and brighten some­one’s day.

A dou­ble bass player will pro­vide en­ter­tain­ment while the pub­lic can leave koha sug­ges­tions or com­ments on pa­per near each art­work.

Writer Michael Trevelyan is also tak­ing part in the event and says it is a re­ally good idea.

“Cre­ativ­ity comes from so many dif­fer­ent places.”

Po­ems and short sto­ries are his tal­ent and this will be his first ex­hi­bi­tion.

Ms Rowan spent four years study­ing vis­ual art at Auck­land Uni­ver­sity and re­cently per­formed in the Auck­land Fringe Fes­ti­val.

She is in­spired by Amer­i­can artist Mi­randa July who also works in film, and Bri­tish artist David Shrigley who as­so­ci­ates words with im­ages.

Ms Rowan and artists Sarah Jayne Wood­ward, Claire Cowan, Tammy Weyer, Sara Stones, Polly Walker, Monique Jekel, Jen­nie Robert­son and Mr Trevelyan will take part in the ex­hi­bi­tion.

The Koha Ex­hi­bi­tion will be held at Cross St Stu­dios, New­ton, near Up­per Queen St, from 6.30pm to 9.30pm on Fri­day.


Will­ing to ex­change: Artist Rose Rowan with an un­ti­tled work for her koha ex­hi­bi­tion.

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