Cre­ative teens’ chance to shine

Auckland City Harbour News - - NEWS - By LAT­IFA DAUD

Hon­our­ing the past is the theme of a Pon­sonby ex­hi­bi­tion of art­work by South Auck­land youth.

Nga Rana­gatahi Toa founder and ex­ec­u­tive di­rec­tor Sarah Longbottom says the ex­hi­bi­tion will hon­our past men­tors and youth and ‘‘the con­tri­bu­tion they’ve made to our growth’’.

The or­gan­i­sa­tion of­fers young peo­ple who have been ex­cluded from main­stream ed­u­ca­tion one-on-one cre­ative arts men­tor­ing and the chance to be part of col­lab­o­ra­tive com­mu­nity cul­tural de­vel­op­ment projects.

The art­works in­clude paint­ings, mu­rals, mu­sic tracks, pho­tog­ra­phy and film. The ex­hi­bi­tion has 15 in­di­vid­ual con­trib­u­tors and eight ran­gatahi that have been work­ing with their men­tors.

The art­works will look into the de­vel­op­ment of the or­gan­i­sa­tion and youth as well as the re­sult of other projects and cre­ative arts pro­grammes since 2010.

These pro­grammes pair marginalised youth with men­tors to en­able and al­low them to reach their po­ten­tial.

Men­tors in­clude var­i­ous po­ets, artists and mu­si­cians.

While the ex­hi­bi­tion has been run­ning for five years, this will be the first to take a re­flec­tive look into the de­vel­op­ment of the or­gan­i­sa­tion.

Stick­ing with the theme of Matariki, ran­gatahi will have the chance to show the public where they come from and tell their own sto­ries.

‘‘It feeds your soul see­ing kids who are in very vul­ner­a­ble po­si­tions in our so­ci­ety hav­ing the brav­ery to tell their story, own their sit­u­a­tion and, like the theme of Matariki, to re­ally carve their own be­gin­ning,’’ Longbottom says.

‘‘We re­ally pri­ori­tise the public show­ing of the works be­cause the im­pact of the kids see­ing the au­di­ence re­ac­tion to their works and en­gag­ing with the au­di­ence is where true trans­for­ma­tion takes place.’’

The ex­hi­bi­tion will run un­til July 16 at Stu­dio One Toi Tu, 1 Pon­sonby Rd.

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