Duan Poaneki – Artist and Illustrator
Duan Poaneki was born and raised in Kirikiriroa. “I’m normally overseas, but it's good being back here to ground myself, and having the Creative Waikato team push me to follow my creative aspirations.”
Duan is very connected to te taiao, the natural world. “That’s where I get my inspiration from, through my mahi I want to give back to the taiao. Kaitiakitanga is one of the main things I push in my art, my mahi toi.”
Recently, his journey has seen him having korero with Daniel Ormsby, another Māori creative, to learn more about different kaupapa behind, moko, and karakia. Eventually, Duan wouldn’t mind getting into the moko realm, after he expands his mātauranga first. A big motivation of his has been reconnecting with his Maniapoto side too.
Duan’s recent mahi is the creation of the book ‘Ngā Tae o te Moana - Colours of the Ocean.’ Through the book you can learn some basic te reo Māori, draw, and colour, so youth can learn and tap into kaitiakitanga, or stewardship, too. I created this pukapuka for my daughter.”
His upcoming plans include publishing another book. He is currently working on finishing the illustrations. “I create all the illustrations and my partner compiles them. All our whānau who are fluent in te reo Māori double-check our mahi too.”
His advice for new creatives is to go for it, “keep pushing, keep being creative and follow your dreams. You never know what's going to unfold, just go for it!”
“The natural world is where I get my inspiration from, through my mahi I want to give back to the taiao.”
“You never know what's going to unfold, just go for it!”
”Keep pushing, keep being creative and follow your dreams”
Written by Kae Evans. Kae is a year 3 Bachelor of Communication student at Wintec-Te Pūkenga, majoring in Creative Media. Kae’s study is focused on creative expression through photography and storytelling.