marisatorigoe Biography

The Children of  ‘Aumākua by Marisa Torigoe

Some artists have opted to use manga to explore more personal and self-reflective narratives rather than adventure-oriented stories. In her work, The Children of Aumākua, Marisa Torigoe (b. 1988) reveals the deep personal connections developed between human characters and revered Hawaiian figures and deities.

Living in a seaside town on the island of Hawai‘i, ten-year-old Manuwai learns to cope with the stress of her combative household.  She is whisked away by a large shark who teaches her about the ‘aumākua, deified ancestors who watch over her family. ‘Aumākua is a tale of a girl’s reconnection with the natural world drawn in exquisite detail. ‘Aumākua, published in 2010, also raises issues about the representation of Hawaiian culture. Torigoe, while not of Native Hawaiian ancestry, wrote under the Hawaiian pen name “Pua Kalaunu” or “crown flower.”  Although she now regrets this decision, she originally intended to pay homage to the Hawaiian culture through her stories and images.

http://www.limemediahawaii.com/aumakua

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Copyright © 2013 by University of Hawai‘i, Museum Studies Graduate Certificate Program. All rights reserved. Any use of the material, including reproduction in whole or in part requires permission in writing.  Please contact museum@hawaii.edu for permission and information.

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