Tena koutou katoa
Ko Te Maipi te Maunga
Ko Kaihoata te Awa
Ko Uriti te Moana
Ko Takitimu te Waka
Ko Ngati Kahungunu ki Wairarapa, Ko Rangitane, Ko Ngati Porou oku Iwi
Ko Bronwyn Waipuka-Callander toku ingoa
My name is Bronwyn Waipuka-Callander and I am a contemporary Maori artist living in Waipu, Northland.
I believe creativity is a direct connection to the divine within us all, working with spirituality, manifesting and bringing to the surface qualities of our Wairua (Spirit) - our true selves. We are all creative in some way or another, experiencing levels of creativity in everything we do, including the career paths we choose. However, the quality of creativity depends on our attitudes and intentions with regards to the activity we are focusing on at any given moment.
I think the most emotionally impactful form of creativity is artistic expression. There are so many facets and channels - from music to poetry, visual arts to dance, which all have the ability to inspire and move so many people. Artistic expression is also a space that stimulates true healing because it alters brain chemistry increasing blood flow… this has been scientifically measured.
My own artistic expression is essentially an outlet for my inner thoughts, deeper emotions, cultural beliefs, and my connection to Wairua. From the time I began my creative journey many years ago, I have seen my work gradually develop towards a more consciously aware outlook. This has probably accelerated during recent years, especially through the course of creating the NIU Maori Oracle Cards. I have come to know and feel, as a contemporary Maori artist, that my higher purpose is to positively influence others … expand and illuminate their minds, and to inspire a connection with Wairua. Because I believe when we connect to Spirit we are connecting to the one source, therefore building pathways to harmony and well-being.
The challenge though, as a creative artist, is how do I balance sharing my message and making my work accessible to a broader audience, while at the same time living with the realities of life? Technology, materials, supplies, and running a business on my own, all costs money. I do everything from sales to accounts, web design and marketing, which all eats into my artistic time. It’s the least desirable part of what I do and sometimes it flows well, and other times not, but I have come to terms with the process and do my best with what I am able to do. Not many people would know this, but most of my actual profits either go back into my mahi or go towards supporting individuals and organisations via donations of my work or time. I do like to give back to the community as I believe giving to others brings positivity which eventually filters outward.
As I continue on this creative path, I know it is not so much about the destination, but rather the journey itself. I am still learning to listen and trust my inner voice and hope that the mahi (work) I have done, and will continue to do in the future, helps others to find or enhance their connection with their own inner voice.
I would like to sincerely thank all those who have supported me and my work over the years, because without your tautoko and aroha, my voice would not have been heard :)
Nga mihi nui ki a koutou katoa