My name is Luana Asiata, I am a London based artist with a background in Fine Arts and Graphic Design. I studied painting at Elam School of Fine Arts in New Zealand many moons ago and took a detour into design. For a number of years I worked as a freelance creative designer/art director in publishing and for corporate companies working on a range of designs from film, fashion, food to agriculture – it was a real mix.
Moving to London from NZ was both exciting and scary and a way of dealing with the change was to seek out places and connect with people that reminded me of home. So, when I travelled round Ireland it felt like I was back in NZ. I had been documenting and drawing in my art journal for years and my plan was to do art full time, so to test the waters I showed my work at art fairs, organised pop-up events with friends and other artists, and exhibited my paintings in group art shows. I had built up some confidence and decided at the beginning of 2020 to focus on my art.
I signed up to exhibit at Top Drawer, the UK’s leading international design-led event. I created a body of work based on my travels round Ireland, NZ and the South of France. The result was a collection of bold abstract prints inspired by the places I visited and the people. I showcased this collection at Top Drawer and won an award in the 'Spotted' Awards which showcases new up and coming designers to watch. It was a wonderful start to the year.
At the beginning of lockdown I did a pop-up event at West Elm (Flagship store, London) and organised/exhibited pop-up events in Herne Hill and Kensington (Barkers Building). I've exhibited at Londons largest illustration fair 'House of Illustration' in Kings Cross, and exhibited at The Art Number 23 Gallery in Bermondsey. I am part of ‘Bainbridge Print Studios’, ASC Studios and an all female art collective ‘The Studio Circle’ in South London.
I'm continually reimagining the world in my abstract interpretations, reducing the visible world into shapes, colours and patterns. Music plays a big part and can influence the way I paint or draw, rhythmically it sets a pace and I visualise colour vibrations.
Most of my drawings are in preparation for a painting either in oils or acrylics. Different objects, photos and words trigger a memory or a feeling and I try to interpret that in my work so that when I stand in front of the finished painting or drawing it takes me back to that memory.
Abstract art creates an inner world, you never really know where it will take you or what the end result will be, I love the explorative nature of it and the visual sensations that unfold.
I work from my little studio in South London. Dungarvan is the hometown of my husband, a picturesque town in Ireland that is a constant source of inspiration in my work, I hope one day we'll be able to venture back there and enjoy the great outdoors, beautiful landscape and people.
Elam School of Fine Arts, Auckland University, NZ