Latai Taumoepeau makes live-art-work. Her faivā (body-centred practice) is from her homelands, the Island Kingdom of Tonga and her birthplace Eora Nation. She mimicked, trained and un-learned dance, in multiple institutions of learning, beginning with her village, a suburban church hall, the club and a university.
Her faivā (performing art) centres Tongan philosophies of rela:onal vā (space) and tā (:me); cross-pollina:ng ancient and everyday temporal practise to make visible the impact of climate crisis in the Pacific. She conducts urgent environmental movements and actions to assist transformation in Oceania.
Latai engages in the socio-poli:cal landscape of Australia with sensibilities in race, class & the female body politc; committed to bringing the voice of unseen communities to the frangipani-less foreground. Latai has presented and exhibited across borders, countries, and coastlines. Her works are held in private and public collections including written publications.
Latai won the 2022 ‘ANTI’ Festival ‘Live Art’ Prize in Finland and was recently awarded a 2021 Sidney Myer Creative Fellowship, and the Australia Council of the Arts Fellowship in the Emerging and Experimental Arts category. She is also a recipient of the Prague Quadrennial - Excellence in Performance Design Award in 2019.
In the near future Latai will return to her ancestral home and continue the ultimate faivā of deep sea voyaging and celestial navigation before she becomes ancestor.
K'AINGA CommonWealth, Liveworks 2023