• Chantel Matthews

Kai Korero 26/05/20

Updated: Jun 21, 2020

consists of experiences/stories that are mostly unplanned that usually involve other wāhine.These experiences inform my practice as an exchange through experiences with others and how this sharing feeds into object making art practices with concepts of wellbeing as mana wāhine.

26th May 2020

My Mum worked at Crown Lynn.

After an inspiring video call with Harriet, I went to Bot Pots to gather materials to start making cups. Driving passed my mother's suburb, I got this feeling to go visit. My wairua was telling me to go. We haven't really talked, and I have only seen her once since maybe October last year, so a visit was usually only when my wairua tells me to go and check in on her.

I told her I was making some clay cups. " I used to work at Crown Lynn," she said. I was like what! HUH!! She said yup, my mates and me before you're time. I asked her what she did, and she said she used to get the clay ready for the machines. She did cups, saucers, etc. I couldn't believe it. We went on to talk about other things. I asked her if she would like to make a cup, the first cup. She said she would give it a go. I cut a slab of clay and wrapped it in a plastic apple bag.

What is interesting to me is that it all seems so fitting. The idea that when my mother was young, she made cups, she worked in factories, and she had another life before me. Once she had me at 21, she never worked again. A concept around mana wahine, whakapapa, connecting wāhine through kōrero, and it starts with my mother, something I never knew till this minute, makes me feel optimistic. The experience was serendipitous.

Making some cups. The nature part didn't really inspire me as I thought it might. Working with the hands had its moments. Don't like something not looking perfect. It reminds me of my kete, the kaiako always saying, "your Kete is perfect," even when I would say they seem lopsided, uneven, or wonky. She would say they are perfect just the way they are.