Louis Zalk-Neale

Ls Medium

Artist bio

Ngāi te Rangi, Pākehā

Is an artist based in Ōtaki who embraces the power of body adornment to affirm their takatāpuitanga. They recycle fabrics and wield materials from ngahere, beaches and gutters to add meticulously crafted extensions to their body. They immerse their audience in ritualistic performances, bringing queer visions of the past and future abruptly into the present moment. 


Louie's mahi here was created on a winter residency in Arthur's Pass, in the cold maunga of Kā Tiririti o Te Moana (a.k.a the Southern Alps). In a performance in mountain creek, Louie layers neinei leaves on their skin to help them feel immersed in the mossy surroundings and breathe underwater with gills like kōura. 

Photography thanks to Yuval Zalk-Neale. 

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