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 Polynesian women - 2007
  Issue : mars 08 of 2007
  Printing : Offset
  Imprimerie : Phil@poste
  Production : Arthographie : MATHIUS - Photos : J.STEMBER - PSP - OPT - 2007

Polynesian women
Born in London, England, John Stember opened his first photography studio in Hampstead at 19 years old. He moved to Paris 5 years later and photographed for "Jardins des Modes", "Elle" and "French Vogue". He also directed a documentary about Jean-Luc Godard, and appeared in his movie, "One Plus One", featuring the Rolling Stones. In 1969 he moved to New York where he started photographing regularly for "Glamour" then "American Vogue" and many other magazines. In 1972 he directed a movie, "7254", which was exhibited at the New York Museum of Modern Art and selected for the Bergamo Film Festival in Italy.
He has spent most of his photographic career based in New York City, but at his house in East Hampton he developed a passion for the sea and sailing. As a result in April 2001, he decided to fulfill his dream and sail the 7000 miles from New York to Tahiti, in the South Pacific. During his many long ocean voyages he reignited his passion for photography and created his first book of personal photographs in Tahiti called "Te Hine Manea" or devine femininity. A celebration of the natural, naive beauty of the Polynesian woman and the powerful mythology of ancient Tahiti. He now lives in Tahiti where he is pursuing his passion for the sea, photography and is creating his next book of photographs on the mysterious beauty of the women of Tahiti.
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Polynesian women
Mathius was born in La Baule (France) in 1947 in a family of painters and musicians. But he early questions the classical upbringing he received. In 1964 he works in Paris and exhibits his first pieces of art written and drawn on the walls and pavements of the French capital city. In 1970, he decides to go to Tahiti, where he sets up a Workshop and an Exhibition Space. As he later becomes an expert in Polynesian black pearls, he creates several collections of precious metal jewellery. In 1974, he sets up his own art gallery in Papeete where, for nine years, he exhibits his creations -jewels, sculptures, paintings. The artist participated in the Pacific Arts Festival and exhibited his pieces of work at the Museum of Tahiti and her Islands. After co-founding with Christian Goussault in Tahiti the painting group “Aruru” and the Sépik Workshop, he takes part in various private exhibitions in New Zealand –Auckland, in the United States –Los Angeles and San Francisco. In 1992 he becomes the co-founder and secretary general of the French Polynesian League for the Rights of Man - TA’ATIRA’A PARURU I TE TI’ARA’A MANA O TE TA’ATA. During his term of office as President from 2002 to 2005, the League changes its name to POLYNESIAN LEAGUE FOR HUMAN RIGHTS. It becomes officially affiliated to the French League for Human Rights and becomes the correspondent for the International Federation for Human Rights. Mathius is one of the initiators of the French Polynesian Ethics Committee. He officially becomes a member of it pursuant to a decree in 2000, a year during which he created the painting technique known as “Arthography”.

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