Coasties

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Please click through to the Coasties exhibition here

There's something about New Zealand's west coast which seems to breed individuality. Black sands edged by the Tasman Sea, good surf breaks, an enjoyment of isolation?
Or is it the rain?

In the South Island the West Coasters (often called just 'Coasters') are proud of their differences, their gold-mining history, their independence, their isolation.

Even in Auckland the Westies retain their bogan roots as the café culture moves towards them.

And in Taranaki, along Surf Highway 45 between the sea and the mountain, dairy factories have closed, most of the schools have merged and small towns have become smaller.
But young families move in looking for a simpler life, and artists hunker down and get on with doing what they do best.
Making art.

The bit of coast between Oakura, Tataraimaka, Okato and Puniho looks small on the map, but it holds a major group of artists.
Even one who has escaped to the far north of the Coromandel is still pleased to call himself a Coastie.
So here we are, twelve Coasties. 

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