Claudia Kogachi: Obaachan during the lockdown, Wahiawā, Hawaiʻi | Te Tuhi, Auckland

Claudia Kogachi talks to her obaachan (grandmother) on Skype every day, but in recent months has been unable to visit her at home in Oahu, Hawaiʻi, due to Covid-related border restrictions. In her large-scale rug work for Te Tuhi, Kogachi remembers the most recent visit with her mother, last summer, and some of the routine tasks that make up the days at her obaachan’s house—cleaning the freezer out, rolling musubi (spam sushi), barbecuing galbi / 갈비 (Korean short ribs) for meals—activities running in parallel to ongoing conversations between the women of three generations. The work registers a relationship between social exchange, food, attentiveness, and physical labour. While both Kogachi and her obaachan are frequently preoccupied with practical tasks, in this work such concentration and work might also be understood as forms of familial contact, ways of staying in touch across distance.


5 December – 07 February 2021

5 Dec 2020