Vārchive is a term coined by Kihara that uses the Sāmoan concept of Vā to describe her relationship with her archival research.
Renowned Sāmoan writer Albert Wendt describes the Vā as ‘the space between, the betweenness, not empty space, not space that separates but space that relates, that holds separate entities and things together’.
As part of Kihara’s creative process and behind-the-scenes research, she delves into archives, places and issues, which often results in the creation of new works and projects.
The artist’s Vārchive includes personal research, rare books by 19th century explorers, colonial portraits, pamphlets, news items, a geological sculpture, activist material and visual links between Gauguin and Sāmoa. It provides a backstory or a living story of how Paradise Camp came into being.
I’ve never really tried to be either
a girl or a guy. I’ve always been me
Tuilagi Seiuli Ailani Allan Alo Va’ai
I was so lucky to have my name
Jean; it’s such an asexual name
Being a Fa’afafine itself is an act of
The pacific is no longer untouched
Charlize leo, Miss Samoa Fa’afafine 2017-2018
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This image in this exhibition refers to suicide which some people may find disturbingI understand, I wish to continue