Bill Keoua Nelsen: Weaver, Practitioner, Artist

In my hands…I see my grandmother’s hands.

In my hands I see my past – my grandmother, her sisters, her mother, her mother’s mother and so on – my ancestors; it is they who inspire me and fuel my creativity.

I create contemporary and functional woven pieces of the hala leaf from the pūhala (screwpine pandanus tree) that have since died. I incorporate styles that are timeless yet push the boundaries of the customary while continuing to perpetuate traditional practices of weaving items such as purses, mats, and hats – not being limited to what once was where styling is concerned.

I believe that our kūpuna were visionary when using resources available for the preparation of materials, as well as looking at contemporary and popular styling of the time. While important to be rooted in tradition, I also feel that the practices have become complacent for the sake of maintaining traditions. To draw a greater interest in the young, the practice must evolve in order for the craft to survive.

 Currently I experiment with styling of the hats – reviving styles of yesteryear with a modern flair. I incorporate weaving techniques, both traditional and those learned from our Maori cousins, and creative styling to bring to life appropriate yet timeless functional pieces of wearable art.

I bridge the gap between customary and traditional practices of my kūpuna to modern contemporary times.  

In my hands I know my past, my history, my genealogy!

I am #ALegacyWeaver


私の手を通して ...祖母の手が見えます。

私の手を通して、私の過去が見えます。 それは私の祖母であり、そして彼女の姉妹や曽祖母、高祖母であり、私を刺激し、私の創造性を掻き立ててくれる先祖の存在です。




 現在、私は新たなスタイルの帽子の製作を試みています。 それは、モダンな感覚で創り上げる往年のスタイルの復活。




私の手の中には、私の過去、私の家族の歴史、そして 先祖からの系譜が伝わっているのです。


私は、#ALegacyWeaver なのです。