Stories from Te Auaunga Oakley Creek
Mixed media installation.
Xin Cheng’s Stories from Te Auaunga Oakley Creek is an ongoing body of research into Tāmaki Makaurau Auckland’s longest river, which runs from Hillsborough, West Auckland to the sea. Alongside her regular volunteering with the ecological preservation group, the Friends of Oakley Creek, the artist has visited, tended and documented the waterway, building a body of artistic experiments and responses of the ecosystem. Taking particular interest in the weeds and other human-induced phenomena, this body of work charts the ebb and flow of the dynamic ecosystem, building to “incite curiosity and reveal the intricate more-than-human microcosmos that we live amongst.”
“Below the water surface, koi carps – ‘possums of the waterways’ – are swimming, along with native eels. It has been very heartening to see how diverse creatures still seem to enjoy these ‘highly contaminated landscapes’. Reminders that indeed, we live amongst diverse, multi-species co-existences.”
Xin Cheng has been commissioned to create a new artwork for the 2022 Aotearoa Art Fair with generous support from Yu Mei. Stories from Te Auaunga Oakley Creek will be presented and installed within Yu Mei’s Commercial Bay Lounge at: Yu Mei Commercial Bay, Shop 37/7, Ground Level.
Image: Xin Cheng, Suburban Water Bodies (2021) digital video, silent (2 mins 37 secs). Image courtesy of the artist.