Migrants tell nation their stories

02/03/2014 § Leave a comment

Migrants tell nation their stories

“Eric Dorfman, Prakash Patel, Renata Szarvas, Vijeshwar Prasad and Yumi Mizuno will appear on Neighbourhood, a documentary about migrants who have settled in New Zealand.

Screening at 11am Sunday on TV One, each episode is based in a different neighbourhood and explores four strands that look at creativity, food, politics and treasure from a cultural perspective unique to that neighbourhood.”


The Wanganui episode of Neighbourhood will screen in April.


Film: “Moving” Christchurch, NZ

02/09/2011 § Leave a comment

In his film, Kiyong asks, “Migrants have often left much behind – emotionally, physically and financially – to start new lives and exist without the support networks of extended family and old friends. How do they cope with the trauma, loss and ongoing physical upheaval and sense of dislocation wrought by a natural disaster so severe that even established, lifelong residents have fled elsewhere?”

The film, by Kiyong Park featured in NZ’s 43rd International Film Festival, following not long after the earthquake in Christchurch on the 22nd of February 2011.

Read the full article and interview here.

TCK – Third Culture Kids

29/08/2011 § Leave a comment

You may be able to immagine my enthusiasm when an invite to a meet and greet for this group filtered through to my social networking profile.

So I went along met some people I knew an didnt know it was an excited buzz around the place. Since an article has bee writen my one of the attendies about what can be called “Third Culture Kids”.

It can be read here: www.theaucklander.co.nz

Google it 😉

Design is a culture, not a department – Ingrid Fetell

18/06/2011 § Leave a comment

Click to watch video on Zlin.co.nz

Ziln -Indie Doco Channel-NZTE Better By Design – Ingrid Fetell.

Video found on Zlin chanel it from NZ Trade and Enterprise   ‘Better by Design’

The Trip Series: Sunsets

19/02/2011 § Leave a comment

When I went back to my home town i was in awe of all the sunsets I saw. I kept trying to explain to people that OURS are ‘Really beautiful -others are faster, so fast that its unsatisfying to watch, theyre different.

It was as I walked to my new zealand home and to this sunset, i sat down and felt that if i kept Those sunsets in my heart, others were actually quite beautiful too.

18 days after I come back and I am beginning to understand ‘quality of life’. All I knew before is that it is because I have the privilege of choice that i am willing to make sacrifice of my living standards but I never quite grasped the term. It wasn’t during my time in Russia, that I understood its meaning, but from the slow appreciation of how relaxed and un-bothered I can be here.

I guess Im terrified of falling in love with another country (one seems hard enough), of adultery… or is it of commitment… How many years do widowers wait? What about those who morn their whole life, are they defining what is natural? – to move on, to be transient creatures of pleasure? to be willing to compromise their definition of what what is right… I am just trying to stay true to who my roots, to who I want to be.

that sunset

That night I watched the one DVD i bought in Russia “Aganistan/Chechnya” – war films *blush*. In one film Russian pilots are taken captive for years and years, a journalist is allowed to interview them: “вы скучаете по России?”/”Do you miss Russia?” she asks one, after a long pause of what seems indifference he off-handedly states “… мы и есть россия.”/”….we are Russia”
Another film turns out to be a Chechnya doco (Rus DVDs usually contain as much as they possibly can, in low quality). It describes how  captives were immediatley given local names, I couldn’t help but to think that a similar effect is reached with different -incorrect pronunciation of names by locals.
One 18 year old captive that had become part of the community and was forced to stay part of it decade after decade, after coming home to Russia had went back to that community to marry a local girl. Then having returned again, said that “Родина чувствуется с чужбины.”/”Homeland is felt from afar.”

MigrantYouthNewZealand unites

06/10/2010 § Leave a comment

My joy knew no bounds when I got news of this through Youthline, and just in time to register too! I think these are very exciting and important first steps not just for the organisation but even for all of NZ society. (Maybe there are other events with with similar aims but i’ve been on the look-out and I think it must mean something that i’ve seen nothing to compare this to.)
Finally something like this is happening in New Zealand!

MYNZ is a daughter organisation or a ‘youth unit’ of Shakti, most excitingly it is by youth for youth. (Shakti works to protect immigrant women’s rights, operating from West Auckland from 1995.)

Migration brings with it issues related to settlement, acclimatization to new cultures, cross-cultural barriers, etc. For the youth from immigrant communities, the process of integration while having to live in a traditional environment at home and adapting to western-value based environment outside of home, is a lot harder.
view source

The Youth Conference, MYNZ (Migrant Youth New Zealand), was held on May 27, 2010 with the primary goal of empowering young people of Asian, African and Middle descent to talk openly about the challenges of living in New Zealand. (With input from four other youth organizations: BODY SAFE, YOUTHLINE, YOUTHLAW and MIXIT.)

It was a day-long event that targeted 15-21 year olds and aimed to provide a space them to identify and address issues specific to their experience, build understanding about cross-cultural aspects and help shape their sense of identity in New Zealand. Topics included: cultural ‘juggling’, racism and bullying, family, love and safety, gender issues as well as information sharing by groups who provide support services for immigrant youth.

Although the conference was a while ago now, work continues and a comprehensive report was published in June 2010 (surely available on inquiry) which continues to plot MYNZ’s future.


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Lilibeth Cuenca Rasmussen (Danish-Filipino background)

27/09/2010 § Leave a comment

Recipient of the Eckersberg Medal of Honor in 2008 and chosen as ‘Artist of the Year’ in Denmark 2006, Lilibeth Cuenca Rasmussen works primarily in video and performance art.

Taking her own Danish-Filipino background as a point of departure, Cuenca gathers, adapts, and universalizes her narratives in both a critical and humorous approach in regards to issues such as identity, culture, religion, gender and social relations. Her work has been presented internationally at institutions including: Malmo Kunst Museum, Sweden; Museum of Contemporary Art Seoul, South Korea; and at the Tate Modern, London.

She has participated in numerous exhibitions worldwide including: Performa 09, New York, The Thessalonki Biennial 09, and in 2007 was part of the exhibition, Global Feminisms at the Brooklyn Museum in New York.

Lilibeth talked about her international multi-media performance work and her collaboration with NZ choreographer, Charles Koroneho on her project for Living Room, The Future is already way behind the Present doesn’t exist in my Mind

Naturally I went along to the talk as well as the performance and it was fantastic! Very thankful to the organisers for organising this such a top grade show for all of us for free. I also enjoyed a work she showed during the talk about going back home. She filmed her grandma and herself on a hidden camera with what I can only call a rusty aesthetic. Performance was dramatic, confrontational, just radical enough for this artist it seems. Without doubt, bold, absolutely beautiful functional presentation as Lilibeth moves from classical music to a full blown rap verses.

Artist: Lilibeth Cuenca Rasmussen(DK)
Choreographer: Charles Koroneho(NZ)
Performers: Graduates and students (dance programme), School of Performing and Screen Arts, Unitec NZ

A performance inspired by the writings of Valentine de Saint-Point and Mina Loy that reflects on lust, romanticized sexuality, and the subjugation of women.

Collaborating with composers Pete Drungle and Brian Bender, motion graphic artist Brian Close, costume designer Lise Klitten, Cuenca Rasmussen merges choreography, song, architecture and costume in a multi-media performance.

New Zealand choreographer Charles Koroneho is working in collaboration with Lilibeth Cuenca Rasmussen to re-contextualize the performance ‘The Future is already way behind the Present doesn’t exist in my Mind…’

The new work will be presented in collaboration with production designer Brad Gledhill, utilizing the existing Cuenca Rasmussen performance and incorporating production and design elements created specifically for Saint Patrick’s Square.

Collaborative partners

Concept, script, lyrics and performance Lilibeth Cuenca Rasmussen (DK)
Choreographic collaboration and performance Charles Koroneho (NZ)
Production design Brad Gledhill
Costume design Lise Klitten
Orchestral music Four compositions by Pete Drungle with lyrics of Mina Loy
Electronica music Three compositions by Brian Bender with lyrics of LCR
Performers- her website here.

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