Kelly studied for 4 years at Waiariki Institute of Design – graduating in Maori Design – Fibre and Clay. Kelly is passionate about Maori Weaving and has immersed herself in the beauty and knowledge of ancestral wisdoms. Using these teachings as a springboard, Kelly incorporates non-traditional materials into her work which she has exhibited nationally and internationally over the past 19 years. Kelly has been invited by Creative New Zealand 3 times to represent Aotearoa at the Pacific Rim Indigenous Art Forums in Hawaii, Noumea and San Francisco.
Kelly was invited as Artist in Residence by the Heard Museum, Arizona. She was also invited by the Tohono O’dam People in Arizona, to travel with their artists through Arizona, sharing her love of weaving and her homeland with indigenous school children and adults. Kelly’s love for her country and people has made her a great ambassador for promoting Aotearoa. Kelly was also one of the traditional artists involved with the restoration work of the Tukutuku panels in the wharenui Hotunui at the Auckland Museum.