Contemporary Rotuman Artists

This section of the Rotuma website is dedicated to contemporary Rotuman artists who have drawn on the cultural traditions of thier home island to inspire their creations. If you qualify, or know of someone who qualifies, please notify the webmaster at alanhoward@hawaii.rr.com. Our goal is to provide a space where Rotuman artists can showcase their art for a worldwide as well as a Rotuman audience.

Photo of Konousi Aisake

Konousi Aisake is a wood carver and stained glass artist who lives in Vancouver B.C.

To view examples of his work, click here


Hereniko


Vilsoni Hereniko
, from Mea, Hapmak, is an author, playwright, and filmmaker who lives in Honolulu, Hawai'i, where he is a Professor at the Center for Pacific Islands Studies, University of Hawai'i.


Photo of Rejieli Paulo

Rejieli Paulo is an opera singer with a growing reputation in Australia. She has moved to London, England, where she performed with the National Opera during the 2004-2005 Season.


Photo of Sofia Tekela-Smith


Sofia Tekela-Smith
is an accomplished artist and maker of jewellery & art objects, who makes her home in Grey Lynn, Auckland, New Zealand.


Photo of Tonu Shane Eagleton


Tonu Shane Eagleton is a world-reknowned ecological woodcarver and educator. He is the son of Kelera Sitiveni, whose family roots are in Motusa.

 


 

David Eggleton is also the son of Kelera Sitiveni. He is a prominent New Zealand author, poet, and literary reviewer.

 


Treena Rose is the daughter of Barry & Seforsa Johnson (nee Foster) who reside in Sydney. Seforsa is from Itu'ti'u and her parents are Jione and Emi Foster. Treena is an up-and-coming star on the pop music scene, and has performed in places like New York and Miami to rave reviews.


Sopapelu

Sorpapelu Tipo Fatiaki was born in the village of Lopta, the son of Rev. Irava Fatiaki and Maria Fatiaki. He was a dancer and choreographer with the Oceania Dance Theatre in Suva, and has moved to Nadi where he is starting his own dance company.


Aisea Konrote is a fashion designer in Fiji. Originally from Tuoi in Juju, Rotuma. His designs are based on a consideration of environmental, cultural and traditional factors that utilise natural resources. He stresses the importance of respectability of cultures, traditions and the use of natural resources. He made his debut during Fiji Fashion Week in December 2008.


Hupfeld Hoerder is a designer is the Fiji fashion industry. Hupfeld's mother is from Malhaha. He was production designer and costumes and make up artist for The Land Has Eyes. Pacific Quarterly presented him with The Small Business of the Year award for 2006. He was also named winner of the Handicraft Section and won the Young Entrepreneur of the Year Award.


Alfred Ralifo


Alfred Ralifo is a biology and chemistry teacher at Nadroga Navosa Provincial High School in Nadroga. He won the top prize in the indigenous art category at the 2007 Fiji National Arts Exhibition for his painting fup akiag ne agero. He is the son of Sarote and Nofaga Ralifo of Noa'tau.


Suliana Saverio
Suliana Makarita Saverio is a violinist and a member of the quartet, the Davui Ensemble. Suliana is a student at the Fiji School of Medicine and the daughter of Kaurasi and Akata Saverio.

Craig Marlow is a graphic artist whose paintings are displayed in some of Fiji's top end resorts. He is the son of Liebling Hoeflich, with grandparental roots in Noa'tau, and Herb Marlow.




Letila Mitchell is founder of the Pacific Arts Alliance, Trustee and Current Secretary General. She is also the Director of the Fiji Arts Council. She is a visual and performing artists with 15 years experience performing and working in the Pacific, London, New Zealand and Australia. Letila is the daughter of Drs. Robin and Rosemary Mitchell.
Koni Fiu

Koni Fiu is a musician from Losa, Itu'ti'u, who gave up his day job as an electrical engineer to take up music full time in Fiji. In 2004, he wrote and composed a gospel album released by the group Mighty Men, entitled God our Protector. He recently wrote the lyrics for the mental health theme song titled "We are gonna keep on walking alongside Gary Rounds."


G-5
George Managreve, known professionally as G-5, is a rap hip-hop artist. His father is from Juju in Rotuma while his mother is part Chinese/Fijian. He started experimenting with beats and lyrics with a few friends while at Marist Brothers' High School, and writes his own music, producing beats and rap. The G in his nickname stands for the first letter of his name while 5 represents the five names; George, Kevin, Andrew, John, Managreve, that make up his full name.
Inoke

Inoke Kalounisiga, known professionally as Knox, is a standout in Fiji's amazing breed of talented young musicians. His mother, Sela Fatiaki is part-Rotuman/Samoan from Motusa in Rotuma. His father, Suliasi Tamanalevu, is from Naimasimasi Village in Tailevu. Inoke finished high school at Rotuma High. After foundation studies at the University of the South Pacific, he switched to the Fiji Institute of Technology where he took up music and electronics.


Carlos Semisi designs Tee-shirts that anyone can wear. He hails from Motusa in Itu'ti'i.


John Garisau is a sign artist whose mother is from Losa in Itu'ti'u.


Karay Kunou is fashion designer who began her career while still in seconday school.


Sonny Sofe is an artist in Fiji who bridges three cultural traditions: Rotuman, Samoan, and Fijian. His father is Samoan and his mother is from Rotuma. We was born in Fiji and raised in Samoa, but has been living in Fiji since 2004. Noting that Rotuman artwork has waned over the decades he has set his sights on reviving it.

 


Micah

Micah Fursetafa is a self–taught artist of Rotuman heritage who has been interested in pencil shading and drawing since the age of ten. He began painting in 2006 at the Oceania Centre, USP, starting off with ink painting. He later on painted using acrylics in 2008 and won the Fiji Arts Council "Emerging Artist Award 2008" during the National Fine Arts Exhibition.

 


Kepone Fiu

Kepone Fiu is a former Dudley High School now basec in Sydney, Australia. In 2007 he brought his group Cool Runnings for a series of shows around Fiji. Cool Runnings was formed in Sydney in 2003 and grew to become one of Australia's most sought after reggae acts. In February 2010 the group released a single titled 'Just Because' which is available on iTunes. Kepone's roots are firmly entrenched in Tuakoi village, Itu'ti'u, and Charles Street in Bagasau, Suva where the Rastaman spent his early years.


Jarrad Wilson

Jarrad Wilson is a talented musician from Perth, Australia. His first album, Altruism, in a style that reverberates sounds of the 80’s, is to be released in August 2010. Jarrad is the grandson of Emily Kautane List (nee Hoerder) of Nelson, NZ, and the youngest son of Moira and Richard Wilson of Perth, Australia.


John Mausio

John Mausio hails from Salvei and Noatau, the Island of Rotuma and is a self taught artist. His parents are Fakrautonga Mausio – Marenteu, Noa‘tau and Petero Mausio from the village of Savlei. He is registered with the Fiji Arts Council and is a member of the Rako Group. He aims to be a specialist in mural art.

His skills range from screen printing, graphic design, sign writing and community facilitation.


Jason


Jason Konrote is originally from Pepjei, Rotuma with maternal links to the Rounds. Jason says music has become a way for him to express his identity as a young Rotuman living in a multi-cultural society.

 


Harry Tivaknoa

Harry Tivaknoa paints, designs clothes and earrings and hand bands, but he is also a song writer, poet and singer. All the songs are his own original compositions and sung in the Rotuman language.

Check out his album Afaga


Michael

 

Michael Mausio is a fashion designer in Fiji whose work reflects a strong interest in climate change.

 


The Eastern Brothers have been the resident band at The Ranch nightclub in Suva for several years. Initially formed as an all-Rotuman band in 2003, the Brothers have evolved both in terms of membership and sound—from the all-island feel to a more inclusive style that embraces everything popular.


Fumaru Fatiaki

Fumaru Fatiaki, from Oinafa creates beautifully crafted crowns for the Vodafone Miss Hibiscus winners. In addition to the crowns and tiaras, Fumaru designed the winning sash for all the categories. Fumaru hopes to continue designing wearable arts and would like to be involved in more charity work as well seeing that the gay community are accepted and respected.


Rosie

Rosie Emberson-Semesi is no stranger to the Fiji Fashion industry, having featured in almost every important fashion event in Fiji since the 1980s. Known for her work with masi and her loud bold prints which more than anything celebrates Pacific artforms, Ms Semisi-Emberson is a rarity in that while her art comes naturally to her, she has also sought and achieved formal qualifications in both apparel and textiles as well as in visual arts and fabric printing.


Romano

Romano Fatiaki Sosefo is a talented Rotuman tattooist and painter. He is also known by his artistic moniker 'Romano Mạurea'. Based between Nadi, Fiji and South of Sydney, Australia, he is passionate about researching and reviving Rotuman art forms. This can clearly be seen in his unique Rotuman tattoo art and oil paintings, which are inspired by Rotuman culture, legends, the ocean and island life.


Manoa

Mānoa Erasito Teaiwa is a young male dancer who was born in Suva, Fiji and migrated to Wellington, New Zealand in 2000. He is of Rotuman, African American, I-Kiribati, and Cornish descent. Mānoa took up hip-hop dance classes at the age of 13 and enjoyed this form of expression and creativity. He graduated with a diploma from Whitireia Performing Arts Centre in November 2013.


Renee Jane

Renee Leslie is the daughter of Rita Bentley and Francis Leslie, and the grandchild of Fanefau Fatiaki and Alfred Bentley. She currently resides on the Gold Coast of Australia where she draw her inspirations of hand painting on glass from my island homes of Fiji and Rotuma.