Pāʻutu ʻo Vavaʻu Lahi ADRIANA LEAR

Adriana Lear is a contemporary music and visual artist, music composer, performer and producer, and aspiring academic working on unceded Dharawal country. Adriana was bestowed the oratory title Pāʻutu ʻo Vavaʻu Lahi by Hūfanga Professor ʻŌkusitino Māhina, a chief of Ma’ofanga for her work in developing the Indigenous Tongan (and Moana) based -Vā (Time-Space) Philosophy of Art.

Adriana’s practice centres on Indigeniety, biculturalism and belonging. Across video, photography and sound installation, Adriana processes intergenerational trauma and contemplates cross-cultural queer female experience. Her works inherently desire a connection to heritage, an interrogation of theory, and an understanding of self through decolonial practices.

Adriana is currently completing her Doctor of Philosophy in Creative Arts under the esteemed co-supervision of Hūfanga Professor ʻŌkusitino Māhina, Maui-Tā-Vā-He-Akó Professor Tēvita Ka’ili, Dr Terumi Narushima, and Dr Su Ballard. In 2018, Adriana exhibited in Wayfinders, co-curated by the Australian Museum, Blacktown Arts Centre, and Casula Powerhouse Arts Centre (CPAC) where she was also a Studios Switch 2016 Artist in Residence.

Adriana’s music works have featured on BBC America’s Orphan Black, and Canadian TV series Dark Matter. She has produced public programs such as Identify youth music, culture and identity workshop for CPAC, and coordinated events such as Truth for the Youth with Foreigndub and Weave Youth Services.

Adriana works closely with fellow artist, Xavier Harvey.


Adriana Lear, Bleeding Earth 2015


b. Wollongong, New South Wales

Tongan, Australian

Selected Education & Training

2019 Doctor of Philosophy (Creative Arts), University of Wollongong (current)

2018 Bachelor of Creative Arts Honours (class I), University of Wollongong

2015 Logic Pro X II (short course), Australian Institute of Music

2014 Logic Pro X I (short course), Australian Institute of Music

2006 Screen Acting Essentials (short course), National Institute of Dramatic Art

2005-07 Bachelor of Arts in Communication, University of Technology Sydney

2003 AMEB Grade 6 Music Theory Examination

2002 AMEB Grade 8 Music Practical (flute) Examination (A+)


2019 Presenter & Performer, ‘Sounds of the Pacific’, Association of Social Anthropology in Oceania conference, University of Auckland

2018 ‘A Study of Traditional Tongan Music using the Tā-Vā (Time-Space) Theory of Art’, Honours thesis, University of Wollongong

2016 ‘Heatwave’ w/ Serpents of the She, music placement, Orphan Black, BBC America

2016 ‘Control’ w/ Serpents of the She, music placement, Orphan Black, BBC America

2016 ‘Heatwave’ w/ Serpents of the She, music placement, Dark Matter, Syfy NBC

2016 ‘Haze’ w/ Serpents of the She, extended play record (EP), 66 Music, Canberra


2018 ‘1:2:1 Dualism and the Politics of Belonging’, student project, University of Wollongong Project Gallery

2015 ‘Bleeding Earth’, curated by Adriana Lear, 107 Projects


2018Wayfinders’ w/ Amrita Hepi, Seinileva Huakau, Donita Hulme, Victoria Hunt, Robert Jahnke, Yasbelle Kerkow, Erna Lilje, Greg Semu, Talia Smith, Salote Tawale, Angela Tiatia and WeAve, co-curated by the Australian Museum, Blacktown Arts Centre, and Casula Powerhouse Arts Centre


2016 ‘Studios Switch’ w/ David Capra, Matt Chun, Caroline Garcia, Anna Kuroda and Claudia Nicholson, Casula Powerhouse Arts Centre


2018 Research Assistant, Mapping the Islands, Global Challenges, University of Wollongong

2016 Music Composer/Producer, ‘If lyrics about Women were about Men’ w/ The Bad Bitch Choir, Buzzfeed Australia

2016 Program Manager, Identify youth music, culture and identity workshop, Casula Powerhouse Arts Centre

Selected performances / roles

2018 Lead Actress, Motif audio-visual work

2016 Performance Poet w/ Woman Writes Movement, Network of Women Students Australia’s Annual Conference, UTS

2015 Vocalist w/ The Bad Bitch Choir, TedX Youth, Sydney Opera House

2015 Vocalist w/ The Bad Bitch Choir, Claire Bowditch & Adalita Srsen Winter Secrets concert, The Factory Theatre, Sydney

2015 Performance Poet, Musician & Vocalist w/ Woman Writes Movement & Prolifik the Gifted, Fiji Day, Liverpool

2015 Performance Poet & Vocalist w/ Woman Writes Movement, Western Sydney Homeless Connect, Parramatta

2014 Lead Actress, Summertime Sadness Urban Noize Remix music video

2014 Extra, Chivas Regal TVC video featuring Chris Noth

2014 Lead Actress, Bleeding Earth music video by Bati Graves

2012 Lead Actress, Firestorm music video by Kobra Kai

2012 Lead Actress, Escape short film by SAE Institute

2003–04 Principal Flautist, Sydney Youth Philharmonic Orchestra

2001–03 Principal Flautist, Australian Winds Orchestra

2000 First Flautist, Australian Winds Orchestra European tour

Selected Arts & Cultural Work

2018 Independent Assistant Editor, refugee interviews, The Guardian

2016-17 Digital Marketing Officer (contract), 66 Music

2013-17 Ticketing Officer, Reggae Carnival

2013-16 Marketing Communications Coordinator (contract), Kinsky Roots Band

2014 Marketing Communications Coordinator (contract), Sparky’s Reggae Bar

2014 Assistant Journalist, Krill Magazine

2014 Event Promoter, Shapeshifter @ Sydney Manning Bar

2013-14 Marketing Communications Coordinator (contract), Kobra Kai Live

2013 Event Coordinator w/ Foreigndub and Weave Youth Services, Truth for the Youth community arts event

2013 Writer and Co-producer, Succulent community arts project

2013 Assistant Event Producer, Avant Gard Nights

2012-13 PR & Marketing Communications Coordinator (contract), Full Throttle Entertainment

2008-09 Event Coordinator, Rockin’ the Random community arts events