My ART | Artist: Edith Amituanai

Artist: Edith Amituanai

Artist: Edith Amituanai

What images are pinned to your studio wall?

I don’t have a studio, I need one desperately, but it would be things I’ve collected over the years like a poster from a Marie Shannon exhibition, a Wolfgang Tillmans postcard, a Tyree Brothers late 19th century portrait of a Māori wedding.

The first artwork that made an impact on you?

Art books. I should make a list of books I wish I had stolen from the Elam library before it closed: Nan Goldin’s Ballad of Sexual Dependency, David Cook’s Lake of Coal, William Eggleston’s Guide, and Larry Sultan’s classic Pictures from Home.

What could you imagine doing if you weren’t an artist?

Making television programmes.

Who is your ideal studio buddy?

I spend so much time with people, so in the studio ideally it’s just me and my speaker “Alexa play…”

What is Alexa playing?

Pre-lockdown I was getting ready to go see Stormzy, so UK Grime if I’m up for it, otherwise I’ve been listening to what the kids like: Snoh Aalegra, Ari Lennox, Solange.

What are you reading?

I just finished Educated by Tara Westover; a memoir by a woman raised in a doomsday prepper Mormon fundamentalist home… perhaps not the best thing to read in isolation…

Recommend something to watch?

In my blood it runs – an indigenous Australian documentary. It was in cinemas when Covid19 lockdown began, and you can rent it on Vimeo.

What’s next for you?

Making pictures, oscillating between outdoors, in the landscape, and homemade studios.

What is art for?

Sometimes I think it’s useless but we need it. I need it.

April 2020
Edith Amituanai is represented by Anna Miles Gallery, Auckland.