PAEMANU : TAURAKA TOI - A LANDING PLACE
will occupy the six galleries on the second floor of the Dunedin
Public Art Gallery from 12 December 2021 – 27 April 2022
Exhibition areas / Kaupapa
Whakawhitika can take the form of actions, assignments, exchange or conveyance. The artworks in these galleries draw on this principle of transition to explore human relationships with water and waterways.
Waterways include lakes formed by ancestral figures, seasonal currents used to navigate the first voyaging waka to Te Waipounamu, and the freshwater resources that sustain human and natural life. Whakawhitika locates these relationships in contemporary Māori experiences, bringing together past, present and future.
Whakawhitika is placed at a significant time in Kāi Tahu environmental action, as Te Rūnanga o Ngāi Tahu seeks recognition of its rakatirataka over freshwater in the Kāi Tahu takiwā before the High Court. These artworks are guided by the environmental and cultural values that underscore this claim.
Artists - Mahi Toi
Alix Ashworth, Megan Brady, Conor Clarke, Lonnie Hutchinson
Moewai Marsh, Neke Moa, Neil Pardington
Jennifer Katarina Rendall, Peter Robinson, Rachel Ruckstuhl - Mann
Kaihaukai Collective: Simon Kaan and Ron Bull
'Tuturu series 1-4' 2021. We come from the mountains. It nourishes us. Our awa. We drink its water. It cleanses our bodies and souls. We gather kai on Takata Whenua, we harvest plants, we give back to the land and to our people. We respect Papatūānuku. We carefully handle her rich ochre kōkowai like it is a newborn baby. Giving it love and attention, breathing life into every little bit of dust its become. We bring our landscapes with us everywhere we go. We paint our ancestors’ stories
Urutaka 1–5, 2021 Peter Robinson’s new artworks issue a challenge to the audience because they consist only of plastic bags, often ripped and torn, seemingly made without skill or consideration. When we land before them, it seems we are far from familiar and homely surroundings; there is a provocation to adapt. However, contrary to this impulse, there’s an art history or whakapapa that supports Robinson’s presentation.
Ritual Offerings Kāitiaki #1, 2021 Ngā wai, they crash and drag. The undertow is strong here, pulling the mauri from the cliffs, distributing it among the stones. Ngā kōhatu, collected by strangers, Carry our stories to their spaces without knowing the blood that joins their space to mine. Protector of ngā whakapapa, ngā wai, ngā kōhatu, Te Kāitiaki holds the space, The memories of the mauri in the stones. Safe within hā puku, a home within a home.
Rachel Ruckstuhl - Mann
Kei Hea te Tuna?! Whāia Tīramarama – The Search He Au – Current/Whirlpool/String, 2021 These works began by exploring the old foreshore of Ōtepoti through a story about Hinemoana searching for lost tuna. I wanted to perform a map of these old tides as tuna, as Hinemoana, and see how I might engage with contemporary sites in these other forms. I hope these images and forms of water and memory activate curiosity about how we care for our important stories, names and species in our everyday space.
Pūtahi / Confluence: 2021 This series represents sites significant to Waitaha, Kāti Māmoe and Kāi Tahu iwi. Waitaha lived in Te Whata Pāraerae, Waihemo from as early as 1300 AD. Te Raka-a-hineatua, the pā of Taoka at Kātiki, and Te Pā a Te Wera, the pā of Te Wera at Huriawa, were both fortified and set in dramatic coastal landscapes. The waka Āraiteuru was wrecked on Taki Te Uru reef, Matakaea. Its cargo of kūmara, hue and hīnaki washed overboard to transform into the Moeraki boulders.
Objects in mirror are closer than they appear [Tapuae-o-Uenuku] 2021 Mind map 2021 Travel without moving 2018 What does it mean to define my identity by a mountain I have never seen? Never made eye contact with. Not really. Obscured from view behind the Seaward Kaikōura Range, I’d have to go inland to see Te Tapuae-o-Uenuku. But should I? What does ocular vision have to do with truly seeing, knowing or being in the world?
Te huinga ō te whānau Hātaretare Hineraumaha – Ātua o te whānau Hataretare 2021 Whakapapa is the critical connection to all things ‘here’ in te ao kikokiko and ‘there’ with ātua in te ao mahana. Our spaces have been created and continue to evolve through the mahi of ātua, we are integral in this mahi. I have created a tomokanga for the hātaretare whānau. Ka tangi rātou mā – they are crying out for help. native wood, a resource that may no longer exist if we fail to protect the whānau.
Jennifer Katarina Rendall
Te Nehenehe Kahurangi [The Blue Forest] 2020 Nehenehe is an old, less commonly used kupu for forest. Kahurangi can be interpreted as both treasure, as in the unique blue/green Kahurangi type of pounamu, and also, blue like the hue of water essential to all life, and of waterways that reflect the sky. My intention for this work was to represent a range of our mahika kai and rongoā varieties of plants, trees, and bush, that are endangered, threatened or declining species,
It rains, and we swim, 2021 Here is my kete. I hand it over to you to help navigate. An invitation, to move forward – to look back. Weave them together. Watch your footprint hold, lifting slow as you progress, It follows close by. Creating a moment to recognise yourself in a former step. These are my small steps, connecting our birth, our growth. It cushions my weight. Watch as our pathway absorbs the water around. It rains, and we swim.