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  • Writer's pictureTheresa Reihana

New Blog

So here I am writing my first blog post. Why? Because I’m not super human. I like meeting, teaching and socialising but for now, I just can’t get around like I used to. Writing posts allows me to maintain contact.

Bit of background

If you’ve read my profile you will know that my father is Ngatihine (Taitokerau) and my mother is Pākehā (Danish, English, and Scottish). My husband Bryce is Ngaitai (Torere) and English. We have 6 tamariki with 2 left at home and 5 mokopuna. If you know my work you will also know it’s from the perspective of a woman, a mother, a daughter and a sister. I can’t speak for all women only myself and I let my art speak for me. Although all woman are sisters, on the whole whatever differences we have there are often so many more similarities in the challenges we face.


Environmental issues are never far from my mind. Much of my work focuses on the degradation of our planet. I’m fearful of what my tamariki and mokopuna will face in a future where I am no longer here to awhi them.

The Accidental Art Teacher

Before I was an exhibiting artist I was a driver and labourer on the ‘then’ Manukau City Council in South Auckland and I loved it. After moving back up north I started painting and become an artist and I loved that. Then, because of requests, I become an accidental art teacher for both children and adults. Of all of these my role as a kaiako gave me the most fulfilment. I feel that korero pono honesty, hohonutanga connectedness and whanaungatanga relationships create an atmostphere for everyone to flourish.

Art comes from within each individual (the sharing of emotion and feeling) but in visual arts there are tricks that help that creativity emerge onto a canvas.

‘Art, in its broadest sense, is a form of communication. It means whatever the artist intends it to mean, and this meaning is shaped by the materials, techniques, and forms it makes use of. The meaning of art is shaped by the intentions of the artist as well as the feelings and ideas it engenders in the viewer as well as the ideas and feelings it creates in its viewers’[i]

I was diagnosed with lung cancer in 2017 and after undergoing surgery to remove part of my lung I woke with a cognitive malfunction…I lost some of my marbles. It took about a year to recover to a point where I could attend meetings and remember what I had said an hour earlier. My memories were still there just really hard to find. I am getting back up and on the horse but it’s a Clydesdale which was built for strength and not speed!

I therefore have put my teaching on hold for now but am still involved with community projects and have just had my first exhibition since 2017.

My Goals

Sharing my goals with you will help me achieve them. Hopefully together if anyone is in the same boat. I don’t count success in dollars although it definitely is a goal because we need it to survive. I believe we motivate by motivating. We love by being loved. We are connected to other people, communities, rohe, land, water. We can’t flourish as individuals only as a whole community, Hapu. The problem in the world is economic wealth without consideration of resource and culture depletion

My goals are to;

  • Showcase my art and the message that it carries

  • Improve my business and offer some insight for any emerging artists that may benefit from what I’ve learnt.

  • Share, support and engage with you (Art and Art-making)

  • Create a new audience

Please comment or email suggestions of what content you would like to see, feedback, or complaints.

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Kia ora Theresa, I'm what is probably termed, an emerging artist. I've been emerging for years and have finally decided to give it a go, i.e. selling some of my art online. I've always loved your work and am pleased to have found your website and thrilled to see some of my favourite paintings available as prints. I'm a bit restricted on wall space at home and have lots of bought as well as my own canvases on the floor leaning up against the walls. Thanks too for sharing your haerenga nui and hope that all is well now. Love ya work. Ngā mihi nui, Karen



Kia ora Theresa, your art is such a gift, and it's inspiring. I would love to see you publish dates for any up and coming workshops for adults that you may be hosting this year or next year; and also whether you had considered hosting any workshops online? I'm really interested in knowing more about the kaitiaki you use as inspiration in your art. I'm interested in any tips and hacks you might share about any of the medium you have used and which ones are best and in what ways... I've always been curious about how an artist sees the canvas or space they have to work with... I'm not an artist but wonder if its something that can…



Kia ora Theresa, thank you so much for sharing your beautiful Taonga with us xx



Tena koe e hine, nga mihi arohaa kia koe me to whanau katoa. Humbled, moved and filled with different emotions, excitement, hope, blessed n blissed at the same time! What a beautiful gift and wonder filled journey you are on courageous strong humble wahine,,,, power to all that you do dahling xoxo so grateful to have come across your mahi katoa. Tis absolutely Priceless! geez wrote it on the wrong page thingy! arohamai xoxo

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