I have been making work about Ranginui and Papatūānuku since I was sixteen. It’s a creation story—one of darkness and light; life and death; and love and mourning. A reminder that we come from the land.
I squeeze out thousands of plasticky beads and touch each of them with a wet finger. Layers build up. I become the sensation of touching, waiting for the work to reveal itself.
I’ve been thinking about how colonisation puts the thinking mind and the written word first, fracturing our connection to land and our bodies. This weakens our spirit. I find reconnection through art making by moving away from the thinking mind and everything that it wants to force into my work. I turn towards my body. It speaks to nature as it speaks to me.
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Room sheet essay by Natasha Matila Smith what-we-do-have-natasha-matila-smith.pdf