Pablos Art Studios offers free arts opportunities such as materials, workshops, demonstrations, individual tuition, discussion and critique groups, exhibition opportunities, outings, outreach programs, as well as group art therapy. Artists work at their own desk or at a communal table. Participants are Tangata Mātau ā- wheako (have a lived experience of mental health), they enter Pablos service to focus on supporting/maintaining mental wellbeing. Artists work independently or collectively towards their creative goals, balancing their independent art practice with workshops or collaborations.
Kei a Pablos te mahi a te ratonga utukore e taea ai te whai; pēnei i ngā rawatoi, ngā awheawhe, ngā whakaaturanga pūkenga; te ako kanohi ki te kanohi, te whakawhitiwhiti whakaaro ā-rōpū, ngā haerenga, ngā hōtaka ā-hapori; ka mutu ko te haumanu toi ā-rōpū. Ka mahi ngā ringatoi kei ō rātou ake papamahi, kei tētāhi papamahi nui ā-iwi rānei. He tāngata mātau ā-wheako ngā ringatoi e uru ai ki Pablos mō te āta tiaki i te hauora hinengaro te take. He mahi takitahi, he mahi takitini rānei tā te ringatoi hei whai i ōna ake hua auaha. Mā reira, tautika ai āna ake mahi toi me ngā awheawhe, me te mahi tahi rānei.
Our artists and their stories
Click here to read Anton's story
Pablos artist Anton Pierce calls Kilbirnie home. As a child of 12, his family could see he was talented at drawing. During college he was one of the top in his art class and loved spending time there especially because of the positive influence of his art teacher Rob Taylor. He was mostly making acrylic paintings of still life. Following his education he continued making street art as it allowed him to create from his imagination. This led to large paintings on walls of shops. He also enjoyed portraits for the challenge. Anton is inspired by colour, especially reds with light greens or the contrast of bright with earth colours. He does not like being limited to one particular style or medium. Currently, Anton is creating designs on fabric patches which allows him to communicate quirky ideas through visual word play. He is also working on mural designs for the streets of Kilbirnie. Anton is influenced by street art artists such as “Curb, Juice, Leaper”. He prefers having some guidelines when creating works for others. He says “I enjoy having a need and being able to answer that need.”
Louis Des Forges
Click here to read Louis' story
Louis is a Wellingtonian and has lived in other places around New Zealand and overseas. He has always enjoyed drawing and completed a portfolio in high school which allowed him to develop his skills. Louis has been attending Pablos for almost 10 years and enjoys the art making process. In Louis work, he considers colour and light the most as well as all the other decisions involved to communicate his visual ideas. His favourite techniques are painting, etching and sketching. In his recent work he was inspired by photos from a snowboarding trip to Japan. He has developed these photographs into his own paintings and prints. Louis is influenced by the style of film director David Fincher who uses long shots to display a character’s environment and situation. These shots are usually dark and atmospheric. Another influence is the novel “Norwegian Wood” by Haruki Murakami.
Click here to read Soraya's story
Soraya Xe move to Wellington five years ago. Originally, she is from Whatuwhiwhi in Northland. She is Ngati Kahu and Ngaphui descent and spent most of her life in Auckland. She finds home in all of these places. Soraya realised she had a passion for art when using paint for the first time. She found painting became a tool for visual communication and problem solving. She says, “art became a passion early on, an obsession in my teens, a burden in my twenties, a lifeline in my thirties.” She enjoys art for the pure act of concept and creation. “My universe, my conception” she says. She also enjoys the relaxation from crafting. She finds art and craft very different as they have different motivations yet “intermingle and are equally cathartic”. Soraya is a multi-media artist and works with digital collage to up-cycling furniture, sews and crafts yet the thread that connects these mediums together is her painters mind. Her consistent creative technique is automatism which allows her to create work with soul.
Click here to read Alexandria's story
Pablos artist and artist representative Alexandria Tasker “Augmented digital artist and Accidental trend setter” grew in Lower Hutt but calls Wellington home. She grew up in a creatively talented family and began her creative journey from the age of 5 by throwing paint around. Throughout high school she focused on drawing as a way to work out how to make her wood and metal creations. She says art is “damn addictive!” and is like scratching an itch. She has studied design and craft and Graphic Design. Her knowledge of digital and mixed media processes have led to interesting conceptual ideas. The computer and aesthetic of technology plays a strong influence in her art. She is also influenced by Buddhist theories and calls her works 21st century mandalas. Her mandala works represent whatever is going on in life. Her yellow and black painting entitled “full circle” covers her last couple of years dealing with a housing crisis. She also describes them as a nexus point where all possibilities come together, the interconnectedness of everything. She also creates steampunk and industrial panel work. Follow her instagram @alexandriatasker
Click here to read Grant's story
Grant Gurney grew up in the Hutt Valley and enjoyed the nature around there. He has been interested in art since the age of 5 but really got into it once he started coming to Pablo’s 10 years ago and loves being around creative energy. Grant has a vivid imagination and loves connecting to animals and nature through art. He calls himself an Expressionist and paints as a way to express how he perceives things. He specialises in acrylic painting yet also enjoys pastels and experimenting with different techniques. He gets inspiration from all the different artists at Pablo’s. He finds art uses a way to express emotions and share ideas.
Click here to read CJ's story
CJ is from Wainuiomata and began his interest in art at the young age of 4 when he started drawing. He enjoys art as he finds it a challenge and helps his focus. His favourite mediums are colouring in, painting, using stencils. He enjoys taking photos of the moon and sunsets and also uses Lego to create. He uses gel pens when colouring in but gets frustrated when they smudge. CJ gets inspiration from seeing other artists work and visits galleries frequently.
Click here to read Suzy's story
Suzy Hobbs, born and raised in Wellington, an animal rights activist and a vegan enthusiast, realised her passion for art when her mental health took a dive last year. She started to attend Pathways day service in Lower Hutt where one of the Pablos tutors, Francis, held a regular Friday art therapy workshop. She soon came to notice her ultimate love for colour and ever since has been inspired. Pablo’s has become a big part of Suzy’s life as she says that if she was to do art at home not much would get done, whereas Pablo’s is a place for her to get out of the house to a safe and supportive environment not only for her art but for her mental health.