Loloma began studying jewellery at Manukau Institute of Technology in 1992. After travelling across Europe and Asia for ten years, Loloma returned to New Zealand. In 2003, she completed a Visual Arts degree, majoring in jewellery, at The University of Auckland. Since graduating, Loloma has participated regularly in group exhibitions of Pacific art. In her jewellery practice, Loloma frequently employs baggage as a metaphor to investigate ideas of migration, travelling and journeys. Though the term baggage can carry negative connotations, in
In her series Journey and Memory Baggage, 2003, Loloma exhibited miniature bags made of nylon fishing line in tribute to her Samoan and Fijian ancestry. She employed French knitting techniques to produce small-scale morphed vessels, reminiscent to the woven bags of Oceania. Loloma later made a suite of 2-dimensional suitcases made from copper. Each suitcase is individually adorned with an image reminiscent of the Pacific islands, such as an outline of chief’s thatch-roofed house. The materials equally bring to mind the Pacific. The warm, earthy colours of copper, amplified through chemical treatment, evoke the brown tones of tapa and coconut shells. The patina of used copper furthermore brings to mind the notion of materials that have journeyed from elsewhere.
Currently living on Waiheke Island, Loloma complements her career as an artist with an interest in gardening. Her love of flora and fauna is apparent in My Cultural Blanket, 2008, a locally-made woollen blanket adorned with flowers. These floral designs are based on traditional prints found on tapa. When draped, the lines of flowers form lei-like shapes. The blanket also sports images that reflect Loloma’s current home in New Zealand. A silverfern – a common signifier of national pride – and a heitiki feature prominently between the woollen plaid lines. With its multicultural motifs, My Cultural Blanket functions almost like a type of mihi, a declaration and celebration of Loloma’s connections to multiple places.
Loloma has exhibited in a number of group exhibitions, including: To Be Pacific, Tairawhiti Museum, Gisbourne, 2013; Pacific Currents, Waiheke Community Art Gallery, Waiheke Island, 2011; Nga potio o Te Kupenga a Taramainuku, Toi Gallery, Waiheke Island, 2010; Braveheart Youth Trust Art Exhibition, ASB Showgrounds, Auckland, 2010; SeaLink Small Sculpture Award, Waiheke Community Art Gallery, Waiheke Island, 2009; Nga Tuahinee Whitu Seven Sistars, Red Shed, Waiheke Island, 2007; Longitude, The Art Studio, Rarotonga, 2007; Pacific Island Islanders, Waiheke Community Art Gallery, Waiheke Island, 2006; Inter-Islands, Waiheke Community Art Gallery, Waiheke Island, 2006; and Pacifica, Upstairs Gallery, Titirangi, 2003.