Boon Street Art Festival, Frankton. ‘The Rise and Fall of the Titoki’ 2018

Inspired by Hamilton’s recently opened concept garden The Rise and Fall of the Titoki wall mural created for the 2018 Boon Art Festival combines classic Flox elements of flora and native fauna with the garden’s planting; and acknowledges the aligning, conservation-based philosophies which are an integral part of her own creative practice.

The concept garden artfully integrates two traditional whakataukii (Maori proverbs) with the representation of nine land uses: pasture, native bush, urban areas, horticulture, tussock grassland, coniferous forest, scrubland, wetland and waterways. The message from these diverse elements is that while humans may attempt to conquer nature, it will ultimately persevere.

The Rise and Fall of the Titoki pays homage to this philosophy of nature and conservation with a central pair of native birds in the form of female Huia figures. One of these now-extinct birds is ghosted in the earthy, ochre tones of tetoki, anointed by Maori on those who have died, represents past failures; while to the forefront is a fully-fledged version, the representation of future opportunities. There is the sense that balance has been lost and needs to be addressed in many areas of society including ecology, culture and gender. These figures are backed with an outward flowing starburst that reflects the natural elements of the concept gardens: water, roses, citrus, grass, conifers, tussock, shrubby tororaro, manuka and oioi grasses.

Through a process of using large format, hand-cut stencils elements are formed via overlapping colours of aerosol spray paint onto a large urban wall, Flox uses her art once again to be inspired by and reflect local concerns while supporting a message of love for the beauty and guardianship of the precious native taonga of Aotearoa.

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My Story

As an aerosol and stencil artist with a fine art degree, Flox has been making her mark on the inner cityscape of Auckland since 2003.

Her trademark native birds, ferns and flowers are a celebration of Aotearoa’s environmental taonga. Using distinctly vibrant and confident colour on a scale combined with delicacy they have magically transformed grey walls into vibrant depictions of the natural world.

Flox swiftly expanded her practice into prints, publications, murals, graphic design, live painting, projects and workshops for both schools and the wider public. She has been involved in numerous collaborations, charity work and both group and solo exhibitions.

Her accessible narratives have broadened the appeal and shaped her into one of New Zealand’s most recognised contemporary artists.

In recent years Flox has focused on refining new ideas, exploring other cultures and pushing her own artistic boundaries. This resulted in a three-month Artist Residency in Taiwan and a journey to Udaipur in India, to expand her international audiences.

Seen everywhere from Berlin, Hong Kong, New York, Taiwan, India and the US, Flox continues spreading her wings and making her presence felt across public spaces and homes worldwide.

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Flox Portrait