Niki graduated with a Bachelor of Visual Arts, majoring in jewellery, from Manukau Institute of Technology in 2000. Since graduating, Niki has achieved much acclaim. Her work is held in public and private collections nationally and internationally, including the Chartwell Trust, British Museum, GOMA, Museum of Volkekund in Germany, Tjibaou Centre in Noumea, the Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa, The University of Auckland and Victoria University of Wellington.
In her practice, Niki considers encounters between Western and Pacific culture, and how this is
An important theme related to the notion of cross-cultural encounter is the effect of Christianity on the pacific. In Seeing the Light, 2008, first exhibited at Milford Galleries, Niki employed synthetic flowers to produce a series of glowing light boxes. Here, the floral motif relates to Niki’s research into Samoan history and the discovery that missionaries had banned woman from wearing flowers in their hair because it was seen to make them too attractive to the opposite sex. Extending on her commentary of colonial intervention in the Pacific, the series’ highlights the historic relationships between gender, sexuality and religion. The series also points to Niki’s interest in transforming materials. Through both using multiple and applying florescent light, Niki elevates the common plastic flower and activates new readings.
Since the early 1990s, Niki has exhibited extensively in New Zealand and internationally, including Australia, New Caledonia, Hawaii, London and New York. Major group exhibitions include Latitudes, Hotel de Ville, Paris, France, 2009; Samoa Contemporary, Pataka Museum, Porirua, 2008; Le Folauga, Auckland Museum, Auckland, 2007; Pasifika Styles at the University of Cambridge Museum, United Kingdom, 2006-2008; Paradise Now, Asia Art Society Museum, New York, 2004 and Bottled Ocean, City Gallery Wellington, 1994. In 2013, a survey of work produced from 1999-2013 was staged at Pataka Art +Museum, Porirua. Niki is represented by Whitespace, Auckland.