Julia Mage’au Gray

Found Words at Pacific Dance Festival, 2017 Image: Raymond Sagapolutele

Found Words at Pacific Dance Festival, 2017 Image: Raymond Sagapolutele

Julia Mage’au Gray is a dancer, choreographer, tattooist, photographer and film-maker who is interested in exploring her Papuan and Mekeo heritage within an urban Australian and New Zealand context. Her performances frequently combine dance with evocative video narratives. Now based in Auckland, Gray co-founded the performance group Sunameke in 1997. Dress or adornment, including the marking of the body (tattoo), is often of particular significance in her performances and films.

For more information on Julia Mage’au Gray please visit: https://www.melanesianmarks.com/

To contact Julia Mage’au Gray: melanesianmarks@gmail.com

Melanisian Marks - Revival Through Practice Residency at Moku HQ , 2018 Image: Ahilapalapa Rands

Melanisian Marks - Revival Through Practice Residency at Moku HQ, 2018 Image: Ahilapalapa Rands

RESIDENCY & PANEL DISCUSSION Melanisian Marks - Revival Through Practice, November 2018 Raven Row, London

While in residency with In*ter*is*land Collective Julia Mage’au Gray marked people in the Raven Row space. While visitors were able to observe this intimate process, they were also able to view her documentary TepTok. A panel discussion was framed within the residency with Julia and curator Ema Tavola sharing personal journeys within the movement of reviving tattoo practices indigenous to the Moana (Oceania) with photos and stories.

Hide - Shifting the Maiden  (Moving Image, 1:07min, 2018), Image: ©2018 Crystal Te Moananui Squares

Hide - Shifting the Maiden (Moving Image, 1:07min, 2018), Image: ©2018 Crystal Te Moananui Squares

EXHIBITION Mana Moana | Mana Wahine, May 2019 Raven Row, London

Hide - Shifting the Maiden (Moving Image, 1:07min, 2018) This vignette is part of a larger series under the title Shifting the Maiden that unpicks and examines the tensions that exist as indigenous people, specifically women, navigating the ongoing colonial project.

In this work the relationship to the body and western ideas of modesty are in dialogue using stop motion and dance. Featuring Toria Maladina & Tepaeru Ariki Lulu French with costuming from Tepaeru Ariki Lulu French and music from J.Mangohig.