Lonnie Hutchinson

Lonnie Hutchinson

Moemoeā: A Model for Dreaming, 2024, aluminium.

Courtesy Milford Galleries, Dunedin and Queenstown.

Thanks to INEX Metals Ltd, Precision Laser Cutting & Welding, and Total Fabrication & Welding.

Lonnie Hutchinson became known for cutting kowhaiwhai patterns into concertinaed black builder’s paper. Sometimes these paper cuts are presented as works; sometimes used as guides to laser-cut sheet metal. Moemoeā: A Model for Dreaming is a metal canopy, under which we can lie and daydream. Raised on poles, it provides shelter to visitors, a moment of pause. We can look up at the kowhaiwhai pattern and consider the ancestral stories it holds or down on the moving shadows it casts on the ground. Hutchinson’s canopy recalls the corrugated-iron roofs used in settler-style homes around Aotearoa/New Zealand, while its pattern offers a counter rhythm.

Lonnie Hutchinson (b.1963, Kai Tahu, Ngāti Kuri ki Kai Tahu, Sāmoan) lives in Ōtautahi/Christchurch. In 1992, she received a Diploma in Textile Printing from Auckland Institute of Technology, and, in 1998, a Bachelor of Design from Unitec Institute of Technology, Tāmaki Makaurau/Auckland. She uses stories and customs drawn from her Kai Tahu and Sāmoan ancestries as lenses on contemporary social and political issues, particularly relating to gender and colonisation. Her survey show Black Bird was presented at the Gus Fisher Art Gallery, Tāmaki Makaurau/Auckland, and the Dowse Art Museum, Te Awa Kairangi ki Tai/Lower Hutt, in 2015. Group shows include L’Art Urbain du Pacifique, Castle of Saint-Laurent, Limousin, in 2005; Pasifika Styles, University of Cambridge Museum, in 2006; Home AKL, Auckland Art Gallery, in 2012; and Toi Tū Toi Ora, Auckland Art Gallery, in 2020. She has created public works, including built-in components for Auckland Art Gallery, in 2011; Ronwood Avenue carpark, Manukau/South Auckland, in 2015, and Christchurch’s justice and emergency-services precinct, in 2016. She works collaboratively with Lily Laita and Niki Hastings-McFall as the Vahine Collective.