Aotearoa New Zealand
- Digital photograph
- Purchased 2021
- 1122 x 1580mm
Tags: appropriation (imagery), clothes lines, fences, hoses (tools), houses, seashell, swimming pools, women (female humans)
A few years ago, Louisa Afoa began her ongoing project A Pool is not the Ocean when she moved from her family home in Papakura to Torbay on the North Shore of Tāmaki Makaurau, Auckland – two suburbs with very different socioeconomic and cultural make-up. The series, which includes Blue Clam, explores brown bodies in white spaces, exposing moments of prejudice, misconception and racism in suburban middle-class New Zealand.
Blue Clam is a self-portrait in the style of Botticelli’s Birth of Venus, an Italian Renaissance painting that shows the classical goddess of love and beauty arriving on land in a clam shell. Recreating the work in her own backyard, Louisa shows how beauty is contextual and depends on your cultural perspective – that there are many kinds of beauty.
(Perilous: Unheard Stories from the Collection, 6 August 2022- )