Victoria University of Wellington Creativity Week

Creativity Week

Embracing the unruliness of imagination, the play of creativity and the courage they give us to push ourselves beyond the unknown.

Hosted by Victoria University of Wellington, Creativity Week 2016 successfully highlighted some of the varied and exciting forms that creative thinking can take at Victoria.

From 21–25 November, the week-long programme of events, workshops and performances showcased the interdisciplinary, multimodal and cross-cultural faces of creativity.

Daily themes include:

  • creativity as cultural identity
  • creativity as theory in practice
  • creativity as digital communication
  • creativity as sustainability and innovation
  • creativity as interdisciplinary.

Highlights of the week

Faces of Creativity: Tattooing as Cultural Identity

An exhibition by Helen Mitchell: a photographer whose work examines contemporary culture through the practices of portraiture and documentary photography. Her research focuses on the documentation of tattooing locally and internationally with the exploration of tattooing and its relationship to post-coloniality and cultural exchange.

Meet with Professor Luci Tapahonso

Students and staff were given the opportunity to meet Professor Luci Tapahonso, Poet Laureate of the Navajo Nation, who was the inaugural Wai-te-ata Press Creator-in-Residence during Creativity Week.

Postgraduate Student Association and Cultivating Creative Capital Symposium

Karen Vercoe, business consultant to Māori and Pasifika health and social service providers, opened the Symposium. Professor David Gauntlett then ran a Lego Workshop for Victoria's postgraduate students.

Creative Coalitions: Re-imagining Business, Academia and Government

Professor Moura Quayle of the University of British Columbia, Canada, unpacked design processes, principles and practices, and translated them into the world of creative coalitions—re-thinking how we work together on systemic problems and maintain a competitive advantage.

Languages of Indigeneity: Verbal, Visual and Legal

Professor Mark Hickford, Pro Vice-Chancellor of Law, chaired an interdisciplinary roundtable exploring expressions of indigeneity on a local and global stage. He was joined by Professor Luci Tapahonso, Poet Laureate of the Navajo Nation, Steve Ma Ching, a Pasifika tattoo artist, Catherine Iorns Magallanes and Māmari Stephens of the School of Law. Other members included Sean Mallon, Senior Curator Pacific Cultures, Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa and Dr Arini Loader from the School of History, Philosophy, Political Science and International Relations.

Panel Conversation: Creativity as Theory in Practice

Jazz improviser Mark Donlon, writer Anna Smaill and filmaker Dr Miriam Ross examine and articulate the cross-feed between their scholarly and artistic research.

Being creative

Professor David Gauntlett, a world authority on creativity and play and Victoria's inaugural Ambassador of Creativity, gave a public lecture.

Beyond Clinical Data: Creativity and Wellbeing from a Māori, Holistic Perspective

This was an interdisciplinary conversation with Professor Gregor Coster and Karen Vercoe, discussing health and wellbeing for Māori individuals and communities as a holistic concept that goes beyond, perhaps even transcends, clinical facts, and the role that culture and creativity play.

Panel Conversation: Creativity as Digital Communication

Composer and Professor John Psathas, computer scientist and Professor Neil Dodgson and media artist and activist and lecturer Walter Langelaar explored the role of digital technologies in communication.

Faces of Creativity in Digital Spaces

Associate Professor Linda Leung of the University of Technology Sydney, and Dr Geoff Hinchcliffe, from the Australian National University, held an interdisciplinary workshop exploring the ways in which creativity claims and redefines the digital space across disciplines, media and audiences.

Creating and Maintaining Sustainability—An Interdisciplinary Conversation with Moura Quayle

An interdisciplinary conversation exploring how university research and teaching can guide and support governments and communities to create and maintain sustainability as an holistic way of thinking and living. With Professor Moura Quayle of the University of British Columbia, Canada and Associate Professor Marjan van den Belt, Assistant Vice-Chancellor (Sustainability).

Panel Conversation: Creativity as Innovation

Composer Alison Isadora, writer Anne Kennedy and polymath Greg O'Brien, Victoria University's creators-in-residence, interrogated innovation in their work.

Student Creativity Showcase

This week closed with a showcase of student creativity and musical performances featuring representatives of our undergraduate Creativity Scholarship winners along with postgraduate summer scholars who are working on the Creative Legacy Project. There was also an exhibition of creative student projects on level 2 of the Hub.