Tiare Ribeaux received the Creative Capital Award in 2024. Tiare Ribeaux is a Kānaka ‘Ōiwi filmmaker, artist and producer based in Honolulu, Hawai‘i. Her artwork and films disrupt conventional storytelling methods by employing magical realist explorations of spirituality, labor, and the environment to critique both social and ecological imbalances. Ribeaux’s work traverses between the mundane and dreamworlds – creating stories around transformation and how our bodies are inextricably linked to land and water systems. Her films use visual narrative and components of speculative fiction and fantasy to reimagine both our present realities and future trajectories of healing, queerness, lineage, place and belonging. She integrates immersion within community, personal/ancestral narratives, and Hawaiian cosmology into her films.
She has shown work both nationally and internationally, and has won numerous grants and awards for her artistic leadership including the Sundance Native Lab Fellowship and the Indigenous Film Fund, the National Endowment for the Arts, two New and Experimental Works Grants from the Kenneth Rainin Foundation, the Building Demand for the Arts Grant from the Doris Duke Foundation, and the Citizen Diplomacy Action Fund, among others. She founded B4BEL4B in Oakland 2014, and served as Artistic Director for 8 years. She has curated and produced various media arts and performance festivals including the Codame Festival and the Soundwave Biennial.
Ke Aka (The Reflection)
Tiare Ribeaux is a Kanaka Ōiwi filmmaker/creative producer from Hawaiʻi whose work utilizes a magical realist lens to reimagine trajectories of lineage, place and belonging.Artist Bio
Ke Aka (The Reflection) is a full-length feature film that traces the journey of a young diasporic Kānaka ʻŌiwi (Hawaiian) woman. Upon her return home, she undergoes a transformative shift from prioritizing personal survival to a deep concern for the well-being of her islands’ land and water. While rediscovering her identity as Māhū (a third gender role with spiritual and healing aspects in Hawaiian Society), she forms connections with two fellow Kānaka on parallel journeys of reconnection. United by a shared calling to heal and resurface their ancestral waters, they ultimately undergo profound personal transformations in the process.
The film aims to showcase Hawaiian wisdom related to hydrological systems, ingrained in ancient chants and stories passed down through generations and brought to life through a magical realist approach in the film. Ke Aka weaves a new narrative that evolves these stories and explores the intricate interplay between people, places, and water. While addressing the challenges faced by many Kānaka, such as being “priced out of paradise,” environmental harm, and spiritual disconnection, the story also emphasizes the potential to thrive through reconnection to culture, land, and community. It paints a narrative of hope, reclamation, and empowerment for Kānaka returning from distant shores.