We were lucky enough to have her part of our current exhibition 'Welcome Home Taranaki Iwi' along with Wi Taepa, Te Rongo Kirkwood, Maria Brockhill, Rangi Kipa, Gabrielle Belz, and Darcy Nicholas. Oh, yes we have them all! And we are proud as punch.
After the exhibition opening evening we sat down with Veranoa to talk weaving and life.
How old were you when you first began weaving?
I first put my hand to flax with the intention of weaving something when I was 13. However I was 'eating' flax from the time I was a baby - that is I was surrounded by it from birth.
Who taught you or how did you learn?
My mother taught me. From the time I was a child I was being taught. Learning from my Mother was such a natural thing. Mothers hand down knowledge, skills, passions, love. I was just fortunate that my Mother's knowledge, skills, passions and love was weaving.
Have you passed your techniques on to others? Who?
I have been a teacher of weaving for 23 years. Over that time I have taught for different teriary institutions. Now I teach privately from The Hetet Artspace. So over the 23 years of teaching at around 10 students a year I guess I've taught over 200 people. Unless my maths sucks. But that sounds about right. Of course only a few continue to become fulltime weavers.
Is there a specific piece you have created that is dearest to your heart? Why?
To date my most special piece has been the Erenora kakahu (cloak).
It was started but left incomplete by my late Mother - who I was extremely close to. Completing it for her was an extremely emotional journey. I also feel that technically it is a decent piece of weaving.
If you could be any animal which one would you be?
Horse. Probably helped by the fact that I am a Sagitarian and also a Horse in the Chinese horoscope.
If you could plan a perfect day what would it consist of from start to finish?
Treadmill for 40 minutes, brekkie, weaving all day. Eating dinner that someone else has prepared, a bit more weaving, bed with a good book then fall asleep watching a good movie. Aaahhhh the good life.
What is your favourite meal and who would cook it?
Seafood, gathered and cooked by my sea loving husband. He makes the best chilli cheese crayfish and paua fritters! A glass of chardonnay. Mmm mmm. Jelly beans for dessert. I love jelly beans.
Currently we have three of Veranoa's muka ketes on display. They are available to purchase for $750 each.
Feel free to pop into KINA or give us a call at the shop 06 7591201.