Navakatoa Tekela-Pule

New Zealand Fashion Museum · 'to fashion' Intro - Navakatoa Tekela-Pule

I am:

Navakatoa Tekela-Pule

I was born in the front room of our family home in Grey Lynn.

My placenta is buried under the pōhutukawa tree.

I'm in absolute love with creating and the process that follows. 

I'm filled with constant adoration of the world and its multitude of colours.

I use creativity as a vehicle to explore my identities, my muses & aesthetic pleasures.

I am currently exploring through poetry & painting.


For healing and encouragement.


I am wearing:

The things I choose to wear were created with both consideration and intent/urgency and clamour.
The idea constantly moved between spaces of old and tried experiences
to arrangements with my new youth and splendid calamity

arranged like flowers.




"Pahū Culture"

Pintuck Dinner Shirt
Cotton Blend
Screen Printed, Black Ink
Gold Lipped Mother Of Pearl (Nacre) Cufflinks

By Abigail Aroha Jensen


"Manifest Anything"

3 Piece Front Set
925 Sterling Silver
Black Lipped Mother Of Pearl (Nacre) Inlay

By Issac Rayneau
IG: @phantomoftheopera_conspiracy



5 Piece Ring Stack Set
925 Sterling Silver, Garnet

By Gloria Florence
IG: @saint_gloriaflorence


"Echos and Murmurs"

Outer Piece -
Red Twine, Gold Lipped Mother Of Pearl (Nacre)
Black Manihiki Pearls.

Inner Piece -
Fishing Line, Freshwater Pearls.

By Sofia Tekela-Smith

IG: @duskifrompepjei



2 Piece Kingston Suit
Cotton Blend
Oil Sticks, Fabric Ink

- Poem On Reverse-

"& to have seen you in lava lava
the fire of polynesia
I will take you to my mothers country
where hibiscus flower's tip their pollen
into canoes drifting out
to sea"

By John Pule
IG: @likupoet



Perfumed scent
Head - Bergamont, Tuberose, Roses, Spiced Tobacco
Heart - Chypre, Leather, Wood homme
Base - Arabian Oud, Amber, Civet, Labdanum

By Navakatoa Tekela-Pule
IG: @wickedwngz

All Listed Artworks Made In NZ, 2022.


narrative of the collective tapestry **text**para**


weaving // tying  // thoughts // around // each other 



Who are you ( I ) today? Where are you ( I ) today ?
What do you ( I ) see when you look at me? If you come closer, how does that change?

as I was pushed through personal epochs/new dawns
And Anchored by the dissolution of "culture"
such as the traditional search for being
or "non-being"
I would have these apparitions
I would become confused and through this cross-pollination confusment
I became scared of death
or more scared of living
I saw lineage in intrinsic things solidified into practice
streaming from culture.
Is it also my culture?
Does the hand that holds my mothers as she weaves
also hold mine ?
how many tesselating hands are stored in my DNA

I danced with the first idea which conceived the last idea - is it the same idea?

Leaning into the world building of elasticity of asserting schema,
personal universes would make up the fabric of my mind
like spiders in the shed I slept in while in Liku
which perhaps is no different from the room I sleep in now
or the room I slept in in Venice, Or cologne
Why are there bounds between these rooms?
Why am I both here and there when I dream?
Demarcation is exhausting.
Is it necessary

My culture is not the same polynesia my parents dreamed of when they were young
but now the straight angles of the portmanteau styled city/island scape that we inhabit
Across ways. Culture is shifting and we are moving towards one, made up of many diagonals and intersections. Multitude, culminations. 

Liminally and laterally.

Our old gods become new again
Becoming us once more
new systems, who inspire and create.
We do not stomp up new islands or fish new land from the sea
but instead form new beauties & mend in the constant contemplative.

Heal and encourage.

For I could spend all afternoon sitting in tall grass
and watching the laconic clouds whisper and change to hues of dull primrose.

My mother around my neck those shark-like teeth
A second skin inscribed with dreams and splendid fauna
with New culture spread across my arms.
This mouth is made of precious metals and shells and sings to you
My aureola fashioned to invoke lost moments of the one I loved colored
Orange. I hallucinated from pheromones
upon reflection.
My walls had fallen down.
I do not know if this orange is fading



Separation by soul means of centrifuge
That of which is both liquid and gas
solid and heinous
Forgiving of vacuity and normcore
Striping down to lick the aspiratations you produced
Discernment no more
Embellishing another,
Laying between legs
I moved soil
Filling a wheelbarrow ten times over
To plant in hopes of a harvest

I am now Efficacious

And you are paragon
The girasole that orbits
The aureole you carry
The life I have
The one I want

Submerged in the waters of its own stream
I now lay under the morning

Becoming that of a refraction.
Becoming an image of an image of an image of an image
of an image of an image

A new incipient state
Breaks like waves
and disperses as quickly as you ended and I begun
only to build and Have impetus once more.

This is not dilapidation of a heavy head
but that of the great expanse
condition chiseled on the basis of brusque journey
These licentious adaptation that astound

My hereditament becomes gingham, flounced and undulating, that of which I was fashioned.
Their only advocate is the dream of home they still stay longing for
It is not trenchant nor afflicted by the provocateur named omission
nor is it indicative of the urgency for demarcation where we planted the sun flowers.
Expounded in gratitude
I will play my part
Determined is my hand that of a libertine
When did you deem yourself beautiful
When were the clouds ever as still

What are you reflecting
What are you carrying on and in your body today
What can and cannot be seen
Tell me what you know about the stars
Embellished expound



"To fashion oneself with fabric.
To fashion oneself with surroundings and symbolism or beliefs and people.
We are constantly fashioning our life.
Playing with the fabric of the cosmos and the textures of reality"


I tasted your saliva for the first time yesterday
Not knowing Where or when you ended and I began. 
Circular in movement,
The offspring of the ficus carica
kept me sustained for the enduring months.
.........A friend told me that it mattered not.

Arriving at a lounge
suspended between my heart
and also my head
Her waltz carried me in
like the wind under My wings.

They gave only one chair
and it’s reflection
Which for you to kindly sit on.
How long has it been my darling?
13 years at sea
infrequent and far away
the leaves of autumn
arranged on the ground
Spelling out your name

The wing bone of a god
Diomedea epomophora
Was Fashioned into an instrument
and placed around my neck
Only to be Played to the high hanging vines of
the cirrus clouds.
they circumnavigated
around and around
closely orbiting my eyes
reminding me of the ringlets in your hair

And your sun kissed skin
and your stillness
your desires
and dreams
And the way you once looked to me

And under your back pocket a rip
framing peach fuzz
I was at the station and there is less to negotiate now
I awaited to meet each train just to see if you would arrive

I hope you do not recognise me
the new marks drawn into my skin.
the new masks I wear.
the new scars I exchanged.
I hope I remain a stranger
and I can watch you from a distance
as you search for me.
your eyes darting quickly.
The hope and excitement to see my eyes again.
In a crowd of faces, will diminish slowly
and I will smile and turn to leave

I hope you do not come around this way.
Because I will not be there.

I hope to spend each and every day
Disguised and in your comfort
The gardenias are beautiful today

you tasted like fruit
papaya and lime
It benefited us gracefully
The agitated walls reminding me
of the train ride to bonn
polishing these walls
my uninspired words of bitter sweet
my religion never failed
I tasted your saliva for the first time yesterday


"My Dreams Are Loud Today"

 A Collection Of Things To Adorn My Skin 

- Navakatoa Tekela-Pule, 2022 -

 For The New Zealand Fashion museum / Auckland Arts festival 


Monuina monuina

Fakaue kehe laa 

kehe kelekele

kehe mahina 

oe tolu 

omai ke fiafia 

omai ke koli 


Copious amounts of love and joy 

Thank you to all before and all beyond

Thank you to everyone invested and Involved

Thank you to the Dialogues that happened because

Thank you to family,friends and lovers 

Past, present & future 


My dreams are loud today

Navakatoa xx

Recorded and filmed by Robert George and The Raro Dog team, 2022.

Portrait by Edith Amituanai.

Last published March 2022.