Check out this lovely wee piece in Stuff about Sunset’s founding mother Misery, AKA Tanja Jade Thompson.
Misery is one of New Zealand’s most beloved and respected pop artists, doing her country proud by exhibiting all over the world in places such as Berlin, Taiwan, Paris, Melbourne and Los Angeles.
Her Chinese Tahitian grandmother fostered Misery’s artistic talent inspiring her intense passion for Pacific and Asian art during their time together and on trips to Tahiti, which is still evident in her work today.
As a teen, Tanja went to Metropolitan College which enhanced her penchant for art. It was there her unique and distinct characters evolved, heavily influenced by obscure Japanese cartoons, cults and Gods, and all things magical.
Misery’s creative reach is extensive, ranging from highly crafted paintings and wall art to animation, fashion and toys and more recently children’s decor brand Misery Guts. She also sculpts, having completed two commissioned bronzes in Auckland’s Art District of Karangahape Road in 2016.
The Sunset family
The article in Stuff shows around Tom and Misery’s home, introducing the kids too; Charlie, Ramona, and Billie.
“This is kind of the house my husband grew up in,” Misery says in the article. “His mum bought the villa next door, and he moved in there with his mum and two sisters when he was a little kid.
“Tom’s mum got together with Johnny, who owns the house we live in now. Johnny had two sons, and they kind of joined the families together. At one stage, this house was joined to the house next door with a tunnel.
“As everybody grew up and moved out of home, Johnny, who was an architect, built a beautiful home out the back. So we kind of live in a commune.
“When Tom and I got together, we moved in here and had flatmates. That was about five or six years ago. All the flatmates have moved out, and children have moved in.
“Our house is probably the most rundown, lived-in house on the street. It's quite obvious we're artists - there's always stuff everywhere. It's a classic old villa that's been transformed a little bit to make it more of a flat.”