Come along to Te Awe Library on the 25th of March to hear from a variety of local queer and takatāpui artists about their experiences through their unique form of artistic expression. Celebrate the LGBTQI+ perspective that comes through in all varieties of expression.
When? Thursday, 25 March at 5:30pm
Where? Te Awe Library, 29B Brandon Street
About the panellists
For more information, check out the panellist bios below — assembled by the fantastic team at Te Awe Library!
Dr Elizabeth Kerekere
Dr Elizabeth Kerekere (she/her) is of Ngāti Oneone, Te Aitanga-a-Māhaki, Te Whānau a Kai, Rongowhakaata and Ngāi Tāmanuhiri. She is an artist, LGBTQ+ activist, scholar and Green Party MP. Elizabeth’s mahi exemplifies her as mana wāhine, using her leadership to hold space for marginalised groups in Aotearoa.
Elizabeth has been a facilitator of community-based activist work for over 40 years, engaging with kaupapa Māori, Te Tiriti and rainbow issues. She has also amplified this activity internationally, including at the United Nations in Geneva. She is now a representative of parliament as part of the proudest rainbow caucus in the world.
The mahi of Elizabeth is legendary, producing major work in mental health and takatāpui identity. Her research intersects the experience of those in both Māori and rainbow communities, focusing on mana tūpuna, mana wāhine and mana takatāpui. This work interrogates the colonial assault on traditional Māori configurations of sexuality and how the continued control of sexuality is a form of persevering colonisation.
Elizabeth shows us that the marginalisation of sexuality is a Te Tiriti issue, an issue of colonial practices, and with her vibrant style, that you can challenge human rights issues with both power and flair.
If you would like to experience the fierce Elizabeth herself, she will be speaking at ‘Queer Experience and Expression’. See you there!
Profile by Hannah
Te Awe Library has the exciting opportunity to host Sam Orchard (he/him) at a Wellington Pride Festival speaker event!
Sam is a queer transgender man who writes comics and illustrations that celebrate difference. He has worked on many major national campaigns that have challenged barriers to inclusion for a variety of communities, including We Are Beneficiaries and Out Loud Aotearoa. He is the author of Rooster Tails that has been running for over 10 years; and Family Portraits, a comic series that amplifies the stories of intersectional identities within Aotearoa’s rainbow communities. These works are informative, reach deeply into the personal and are fun to read.
Sam’s mahi exemplifies the power of communication to enable change. The We Are Beneficiaries campaign brought the experience of marginalised people into the mainstream and took it to the top, being submitted to Parliament. The major impact of this campaign was cultural, with the key device being the social media presence of Sam’s illustrations. These illustrations used storytelling to communicate diverse and overlooked experiences within the welfare system and amplified the demand for compassionate treatment of all welfare recipients. This campaign is an example of how Sam’s work uses art and narrative as a resource for making complex ideas accessible and inclusive, representing the experiences outside of the mainstream.
This speaker embodies that the personal is political so if you want to hear more, Sam will be at our ‘Queer Expression and Experience’ talk at Te Awe Library!
Profile by Hannah
Olga Lapin (she/her) is a Wellington-based artist and musician speaking at ‘Queer Expression and Experience’. Under her @asunder.sweet name she creates dark collage art, expressing how she overcomes pain through strength and willpower. She also designs album covers, band tees, and gig posters for other musicians.
Olga releases solo music as Bodyache. Bodyache is a long-time catharsis project for her mental health, exploring trauma and identity. This month she released a collection of remixes, live set recordings, and harsh noise songs called The Flesh Remixed. This project is a return to her 2018 EP: Vehement Suffering.
You can hear Olga discuss queer expression and experience with our other speakers at Te Awe Library on Thursday the 25th of March. This event is part of our Pride Week event series.
Profile by Emerson