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Staff

Siobhan Connelly

Siobhan has worked for a range of creative institutions in the London and South West England, with a career focused on events management within education. She graduated in 2010 with Bachelor of Arts (Hons) in Photography from The University of Plymouth. She joined Studio One Toi Tū in as the Facility Coordinator in 2017 and in mid 2019 took over the position of Facility Manager.

Nina Darrah

Nina has a Bachelor of Arts and PGDIP majoring in Art History and History from the University of Canterbury. After working and traveling overseas for numerous years Nina has recently returned to Tāmaki Makaurau to contribute to community engagement with the arts. Nina Joins the Studio One Toi Tū Team as Facility Administrator.

Sarah Dawe

Sarah has a Bachelor of Arts (Hons) majoring in Art History and Film, Television and Media Studies. Prior to joining Studio One Toi Tū in 2018, Sarah worked in various creative and cultural institutions in Aotearoa, including Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki and Puke Ariki Museum New Plymouth. Sarah joins the Studio One Toi Tū team as the Programme and Outreach Coordinator.

Kara Wallace

Kara has a PGDip & BVA from AUT. She comes with the experience of running her own gallery and artist run space. She has worked in the creative industry for over ten years and has spent the last five years curating. Having previously worked in publishing at Penguin Books in London for two years, Kara has been the Arts & Culture Programmer here since 2015.

Pareen Diaz

Pareen has a wealth of customer service experience from her previous roles hosting at a cooking school and working on board international cruise ships. She has a background in creative practice as a singer, musician and painter. Pareen joined Studio One Toi Tū in 2017 as the Part-Time Facility Administrator whilst also working towards her degree at the University of Auckland.

Tutors

Sophie Watson

Sophie is an Auckland based illustrator and art tutor. After graduating with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in 2008 she opened The High Seas, a shop and gallery which provided a place for local and international art, music, books and zines with a focus on comic and illustration art. Her zines have won ‘Best of the Fest’ awards at the Auckland Zinefest and her comics were featured in Three Words: An Anthology of Aotearoa/NZ Women’s Comics. Sophie has developed a broad range of art-making skills, covering drawing, painting, printmaking, collage and 3-D works. She works as an arts and crafts tutor at the Mt Albert Community Club with adults who are experiencing or recovering from mental health issues and also teaches children at the Mairangi Arts Centre and at Kings School.

Antoinette Ratcliffe

Antoinette completed her Master of Arts in 2011 where she majored in sculpture and installation.  She has exhibited in galleries all over New Zealand including The Pah Homestead and Studio One, and has also given talks about her practice at the Auckland Art Gallery and Pecha Kucha. Over the past few years, Antoinette’s practice has grown to include taxidermy and butterfly setting. All of her taxidermy specimens are ethically sourced, and usually come with a story as to how they were found.

Siobhan Ridgley

Siobhan Ridgley is an embroidery and textile artist. Lunatype, the embroidery project of Ridgley has popped up over Auckland in the form of exhibitions, curatorship and workshops within Monster Valley Gallery via “Broidery Bitches”, public workshops in Final_final and Studio One Toi Tū. The continuous motion of embroidery can help us to slow down in our busy lives while still feeling productive, functioning as both a form of stress relief and creative expression. Ridgely hopes to help people to find hobbies involving embroidery that work as healthy coping mechanisms for mental illness.

Alvin Xiong

Alvin Xiong is a multi-disciplinary artist specifying in integrating painting techniques into different mediums to achieve a new expression. He holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts in oil painting from Guangzhou Academy of Fine Arts in China and he completed his Master of Fine Arts degree at Elam School of Fine Arts at the University of Auckland in New Zealand. Xiong was the finalist in several New Zealand art awards. His works have been exhibited nationally and internationally. His book was published in Heidelberg Germany in 2011. As an independent curator, he focuses on curating exhibition between New Zealand and China.

Ekarasa Doblanovic

Ekarasa Doblanovic graduated in 2014 with Master Degree (First Degree Honours) in Visual Arts from AUT Auckland. Her creative practice encompasses painting and installation with collaborative and participatory projects, working across New Zealand and Australia as well as internationally for the past decade. Doblanovic's works embody a strong sense of materiality. She uses pure pigments and fabricates her own colours to activate a consideration of colour in its truest state as the primary voice of her works, above form and composition. Additionally, her work investigates the collaborative and participatory where notions of ecology, impermanence and human interactions are explored with the aim to create an empathetic interaction between people, art and nature.

Hollie Ryan

Hollie is a Craft Artist and Jewellery Maker. She incorporates many techniques into her design practice including beading, lace crochet, leather work, embroidery, polymer clay, illustration and woodworking. She graduated Law in 2011 but didn’t find her true calling until she launched her jewellery line Hark Handmade in 2017 and went on to show her designs at New Zealand Fashion Week the following year. She gets complete joy from creating beautiful things by hand and is delighted to share that feeling with others through tutoring.

Eleshea D’Souza

Eleshea D'Souza is a passionate New Zealand artist who has been painting ever since she could hold a brush. She has commissioned over 50 paintings and specialises in oils and acrylics. Eleshea runs an art entertainment business in Auckland, Art In Bloom Academy (www.artinbloom.co.nz). Eleshea joins Studio One Toi Tu as a tutor of poured acrylic and resin art.

Maha Tomo

Ko Waikato me Ngai Tahu Whanui me Ngati Kauwhata me Rangitane oku iwi. Maha Tomo completed a Bachelor of Creative Arts at Manukau Institute of Technology under the guidance of many talented and amazing tutors who influenced and informed his practice. Maha is the lead Facilitator at Toi Manawa Arts. He enjoys Mahi toi (creating art) and works predominantly with Pounamu and bone. “I believe life is an emergence not an emergency and I enjoy being in creative spaces where we can all connect and have fun, Mauri ora!”

Ingrid van Heusden

Ingrid van Heusden is a bespoke jeweller based in Auckland. Ingrid creates unique pieces that are inspired by nature and her surroundings. All her pieces are created with an interest in upcycling and a consciousness of sustainability. Ingrid has a Bachelor of Design and Visual Arts majoring in Contemporary Craft, and her work has been in a number of exhibitions, shows and galleries in Australasia. Ingrid has her bench at Whau Studios, a contemporary jewellery collective and jewellery school in Pt Chevalier.

Valerie Ong

Valerie is a recent graduate with a Fine Arts(hons) degree at Elam School of Fine Arts, with a practice focused on the difficulties on immigration, and the challenge of preserving a cultural identity in a contemporary multi-cultural society. Since graduating, she has worked in various creative institutions in Auckland, including Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, Pah Homestead and Nathan Homestead. She joins the Studio One Toi Tū as a ceramic technician for our drop-in sessions.

Jarad Bryant

Auckland-based multi media artist Jarad Bryant graduated with a printmaking BFA in 1992 and has exhibited widely, been a finalist in numerous art competitions and is represented in several New Zealand art collections. Jarad has been part of the Studio One community for nearly two decades, sharing his wide-ranging knowledge about art theory, practices and technique. He enjoys making learning accessible and helping people to recognise and utilise their creative and expressive potential.

Kairava Gullatz

Kairava Gullatz studied ceramic design in Germany, from where she emigrated to New Zealand in 1997. Kairava has worked as a studio potter since and for the past 12 years has been tutoring adults and children in ceramic arts at facilities across Auckland. Her ever popular ceramics courses for children are a central part of the youth programme and typically book early, parents are advised to contacts us when our new What's On term programmes are released.

Beth Serjeant

Beth Serjeant’s early experience in graphic design led her to examine the interaction and integration of text and imagery through print and letterpress in her art practice. Beth has worked with established New Zealand writers producing images in response to their poetry and has exhibited nationally and internationally. Beth has taught extensively and her popular courses on bookbinding and printing have been a part of the creative community at 1 Ponsonby Road for many years.

Tanja Nola

Tanja Nola graduated with a BFA from London’s Central School of Art and Design in 1987 and an MFA from Elam in 2003. Tanja’s teaching, which started in 1990, has spanned community groups and several tertiary institutions. “It is a privilege to teach and work with people and in particular young art makers. Over the years I have enjoyed finding new ways to help students to tap into their innate knowledge and to become confident in who they are and what they can do.”

Han Nae Kim

Han Nae is a Korean-born visual artist who has been exhibiting in NZ and Australia since 2002. Han completed a Master of Fine Arts with First Class Honours at the Victorian College of Arts in Melbourne in 2012. During her VCA years Han Nae was awarded prestigious accolades and was invited to deliver a drawing workshop for students across multiple visual art disciplines in the school.  She has conducted classes and workshops as a visiting artist at Guangxi Art College, China. Han’s works have been purchased into a number of fine collections including the Wallace Arts Trust, Saachi & Saachi, VCA and the Athenaeum Club.