“Lotu Meri #5”
Paper hat, plastic flowers, wire, beads (34cm wide x 12cm high)
Shout out to Sundays back home in the islands, trying not to fall asleep in Church.
Photographer: Edith Amituanai
Bush Earth + Coral Saltwater Malaita Tikopia Solomon Islands The Happy Isles Hibiscus, lime, and betel nut smiles
A much-needed personal creative outlet for Auckland-based multi-disciplinary artist, Reina Sutton; Salty Bush was started with the intention of sharing, along with the occasional touch of humour and self-deprecation. The name/handle, Salty Bush, is a reference to their parentage. Sutton's mum belongs to the bush people of Malaita, who live inland, growing crops, etc. Her father was a deep-sea free diver who provided for the family by spearfishing, making him part of the saltwater/solwara people.
The irony of using plastic flowers versus plastic in our oceans is not lost. These pieces have intentionally been made to last forever.
The curated plastic flower arrangements, which Sutton refers to as 'floral reefs,' were created out of a desperate need to hide a bad hair day. They started off on headbands, because - big hair + a fat head is a thing. Being able to securely place the floral reefs, in a way which ensured people would NOT be looking at the bad hair situation, was a lifesaver but also came with the side-effect of having people approach to admire, inspect it closely, etc. So please be warned that if you’re having a bad hair day... make sure your energy/patience levels are prepared for some extra human interaction.
With Spring in full swing, and Summer season on the horizon, the floral reefs have made their way onto hats, which have been inspired by hot, sunny days in the garden at Boon Street, Manurewa, Auckland #267, and admiring the neighbourhood island aunties and nannas in their Sunday best.
Please note: If you already have a favourite hat that fits/suits you, depending on the material - the option of having a personalized 'floral reef' by Salty Bush will be on offer, very soon.
IG: @salty.bush E. SaltyBush@mailo.com
Suttons’ creative community membership cards include, Tufala Meri and SaVAge K’lub.
64 Rosebank Rd