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Artists in Residence at Moana Gems Pearl and Art Gallery

Judith Kunzlé

Born in Switzerland, artist Judith Kunzlé has been living in Rarotonga since 1986. Judith came to Rarotonga to illustrate schoolbooks for a UN project, and when she saw the local dancing, she was “blown away” and started drawing it.  Her tie
with Moana Gems  is a strong one, because Moana Gems’ Jackie Tuara is Judith’s Cook Islands dance advisor and
modelled for much of Judith’s early work.

Inspired to explore and convey dynamic movements and body language, Judith works with charcoal, pastels and acrylics,
to bring alive the energy and grace of Cook Islands dance. She also sketches in contemporary dance studios when
travelling to Europe, the US and New Zealand, and paints landscapes, local fauna, fruit and vegetables in watercolour.

Judith has had numerous solo exhibitions, has illustrated the local plants and animals for the Cook Islands Natural Heritage Trust, and her work has been displayed at the Cook Islands National Museum, among other places.

Find out more:  http://www.jkunzle.com and here: http://www.robynbuntin.com/MoreByArtist.asp?ArtistID=251

Art by Judith Kunzlé


Allan Tuara

Allan Tuara, of Mangaian & Rarotongan descent and a resident of Mangaia, has a passion for art and Mangaian history. His artistic skills and his use of traditional Cook Islands motifs are evident in his elaborately carved Mangaian ceremonial adzes.

In pre missionary times elaborately carved adzes played an important part in Mangaian traditional ceremonies. They were revered by all as they symbolised rank and commanded respect holding much spiritual power and significance.

Allan produces replicas of traditional Mangaian Ceremonial Adzes in particular and as close to the original designs as possible. This passion stems from a time when he first saw prints of old Mangaian carvings that missionaries had taken away. It touched him and he was saddened by the fact that all this fine art was lost from us and that there is not a single one left on Mangaia. Many of the original adzes taken from Mangaia can now only be seen in Museums in other countries around the world.

Allan’s wooden carvings are an attempt to keep the precious and treasured Mangaian art alive. Many long hours have gone into creating these Mangaian Ceremonial Adzes. Each Mangaian motif has been intricately carved, every strand of sennit carefully braided, and each basalt adze head carefully chiselled, by hand.

Today Mangaian ceremonial adzes are precious and sort after art pieces and have become collector’s items. They are also cherished heirlooms passed down from one generation to the next. Allan’s art is sold exclusively at Moana Gems. For more information please email info@moanagems.co.ck

Art by Allan Tuara


Glenn Miller (Hori)

Glenn Miller (Hori) is a New Zealand Maori of Ngatikawa-Ngapuhi descent.  He has always had a passion for Maori and Pacific art because of his own antecedents, and became a part-time painter in 2002.  The response to his work has been glowing – all over the world his work has become much in demand.

Married to the niece of well-known Cook Islands artists Mike and Awhitia Tavioni, Glenn now resides in Rarotonga
permanently and his work now shows the influence of both New Zealand and Cook Island Maori cultures.  His passion
for Pacific culture remains undimmed and his work is regularly on show at Moana Gems Pearl and Art Gallery.

See more of his work by clicking here: www.artbyhori.com

Art by Glenn Miller


Maria File

Maria File is a descendant of the Ariki Tinomana of Rarotonga and Ariki Numangatini of Mangaia. The flora and fauna and natural colours of the Pacific are her inspiration.

Maria is also inspired by, and uses, Cook Islands cultural tradition to create contemporary art pieces depicting the world around her. She uses acrylic and works on canvas, fabric, paper, wood and tapa.

Maria can be contacted by email: mariafile@hotmail.co.nz

Art by Maria File














































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