HERALD WEEKLY ISSUE 590: 16 November 2011

BCA show marks 10 years of contemporary art development
On Tuesday evening, Minister for Tourism and Education, Hon Teina Bishop was invited by the Beachcomber Contemporary Art (BCA) Gallery to open the group show “Metamorphis” marking 10 years of the development of contemporary art in the Cook Islands. It was also the Beachcomber’s 63rd art project.
Assisting this development has been the enlightened sponsorship of local supports of the arts namely; Air NZ, CITC Liquor, Pacific Resort , Bancroft Estate Wines, Westpac bank and Cook Islands Printing Services.
Taking part in the show are well known Cook Islands based artists Kay George, Joan Gragg, Tim Buchanan and Loretta Reynolds, NZ based Cook Islanders Sylvia Marsters and Michel Tuffrey, and overseas based artists who have exhibited on Rarotonga previously; Mark Cross, Nanette Lela’ulu, Andy Leleisi’uao and Reuben Patterson.
The BCA has recognized the economic potential of contemporary art and its strong links to education and tourism.
Below, is the speech given by the Minister at the opening.
Ladies and Gentlemen,
Kia orana and thank you for the opportunity to be here with you tonight to celebrate 10 years of development of Contemporary Art in the Cook Islands.
I am delighted to be able to also share this moment with some of our internationally recognized artists who are present here tonight and on that note, I pay tribute to you all for your contributions in facilitating a vision to introduce the myriad of special art form from the Cook Islands that has captured many during this period.
You have chosen “Metamorphis” as your theme for this exhibition which represents your 63rd art project and you should all be justly proud that your contributions, reputations and achievements are gaining momentum and recognition upon the world stage globally.
Contemporary Art is an industry in itself and I would like to acknowledge the stewardship of Beachcomber Contemporary Art who has played a pivotal role in spearheading the development of Art in the Cook Islands over a number of years and has taken it to new horizons to promote not only the artists themselves but also our tiny nation in terms of our artistic, cultural, political and economical diversities.
Our Tourism sector plays a major supportive role in promoting the various art forms and I am delighted to see that this is now more evident in our schools and community organizations where there is an infinite abundance and wealth of talent amongst our people which is also showcased in the work they are producing in areas such as photography, static images, multi media and graphic designs etc.
This sounds good but for me, is this really good enough especially when one considers the huge potential markets within our economy to encourage economic development in what is considered a multi billion industry globally.
Metamorphis is about change and I am fully supportive of Government providing assistance at a national level to ensure that emerging and exemplary talent is not lost in our artists ability to strive for excellence In their work. It is my intention to ensure that Government supports this initiative in future.
It is therefore important that we maintain an ongoing joint venture partnership that acknowledges and recognizes the talents and skills of our artists to focus attention on the uniqueness of the Cook Islands as a destination that is environmentally safe, artistically sound and investment positive.
With this in mind, I leave you with this thought; if Metamorphis is about change, where do you think Government can add value to this process?
Ladies and gentlemen, I have great pleasure in declaring this 2011 Metamorphis Exhibition officially open. -Charles Pitt

Herald Issue 554 09 March
- Norm exposes Trio of Doom
- Briefs from PM’s media conference Tuesday
- Tourism Industry ponders $5 million draft strategy
- Norman George resigns from Cook Islands Party
- Letter of Resignation from CIP
- Norman selfish says Prime Minister

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