Hi I'm Kelly, an artist living and working in Auckland, New Zealand with my husband Michael, son Hieronymus and our cat Marble.
This is my first sketchbook project and it took quite some time to solidify an idea, it began with stitch and the walking away from my job as a Fine Arts Lecturer. I always react to my environment and what's happening around me so as you'll read below the initial idea ended very differently.
Ke tatou tetahi.
We are one.
This sketchbook began as a response to quitting my job as fine arts lecturer after 7 years. The College had sold in 2018 and I was offered a new contract; I could choose between an independent contract and forfeit my employment rights or take an 11% pay cut. I declined both offers; distraught at what had become of education and the future of my students and colleagues, I put my energies into healing those wounds through the stitch and my love of historical images. Then part way through my own grief was superseded by the grief of a nation after 50 people were murdered and a further 48 wounded during Friday Prayers by a lone gunman at 2 mosques in Christchurch New Zealand.
As I write this final statement the memorial service is drawing to a close, during this time the black works have found their place within the sketchbook, the names we must speak have been written. The service, the coming together with the New Zealand Muslim Community, to remember those lives lost and the love/Aroha, kindness, community and hope which we have shown each other following our darkest day.
Step out racism, don’t be silent.
May peace be upon you.
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