Ōku moe moea: The dream which is bigger than I am

A story for those who believe art is not as a luxury, but a necessity
Author: Shona Hammond Boys
Book Year: 2014
Publisher: BMS Books, NZ
ISBN: 9780473309060
Download PDF
Ōku moe moea: The dream which is bigger than I am

Ōku Moe Moea is about a young Māori boy named Victory, who is faced with social and economic difficulties, yet finds his passion through art. The book focuses on the importance of the creative mind, and fostering the differences of individuals.

Beautifully written with the style of oral lore, Ōku Moe Moea exemplifies the simplistic beauty of rural New Zealand. In the context of small communities, the book also depicts the hardships which people face as society changes, such as unemployment, crime, poor housing and toxic relationships. These troubles affect Victory and instead of seeking help, he continues to feel more alone and shuts himself away into his mind.

Victory feels isolated in his small town, because he is seen as different. Yet, you see how his world changes and he learns how to foster his love for art, while hiding it away from those who don’t support him or understand him. In just a few words, this book covers multiple complications of daily life, opening your eyes along with Victory’s, changing and learning as you go.

Ōku Moe Moea illustrates how people are affected by hardship, loss, seclusion, family ties and love. With beautiful pieces of artwork throughout the book, this story will touch your heart, and help you see a different side of New Zealand than you perhaps have forgotten about or might have never known.

There is also a short film based on this novel to promote the children’s art clubs in New Zealand. To buy a copy of the book and/or view the short film to support this cause, please visit the website https://vimeo.com/ondemand/artiam/128440784

Reviewed by Kate Cherven, Fundraising and Communications Intern at the Mental Health Foundation 

Ōku moe moea: The dream which is bigger than I am

Disclaimer: Please note these reviews are not intended as endorsements or recommendations from the Mental Health Foundation. This feature introduces resources that may be useful for individuals with an interest in mental health and wellbeing topics.