Auckland Art Gallery, Auckland
TOI O TAMAKI | Corner Kitchener and Wellesley Streets
artists & participants
press release only in german
Toi Tū Toi Ora: Contemporary Māori Art
December 5, 2020–May 9, 2021
The first exhibition of its kind in nearly 20 years, Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki presents Toi Tū Toi Ora: Contemporary Māori Art, a survey exhibition of more than 300 artworks, exploring cultural histories, Māori knowledge, identity and place.
Uniquely for a retrospective exhibition, Toi Tū Toi Ora reforms a history of 70 years of "contemporary" Māori art in accordance with Māori creation narratives, and centers on Māori cultural understandings of time, knowledge and artistic traditions. This framework allows artists to be paired across generations, united by the themes and concepts that they explore or express in their art, by what they share in common.
Toi Tū Toi Ora begins with Te Kore (the great nothingness) before moving to Te Pō (the perpetual night), then the creation of Te Ao Mārama (the world of light and life) through the separation of Ranginui (sky father) and Papatūānuku (earth mother). Including work by 111 artists, Toi Tū Toi Ora presents both an aspiration and a challenge to realise a future in which contemporary Māori art continues to stand tall—toi tū—and healthy—toi ora—while reinforcing the wisdom and ideas that empower Māori and Indigenous ways of knowing.
The exhibition includes artworks by key figures in contemporary New Zealand art—Ralph Hotere, Lonnie Hutchinson, Robyn Kahukiwa, Mere Harrison Lodge, Merata Mita, Buck Nin, Fiona Pardington, Michael Parekōwhai, James Ormsby, Lisa Reihana, Rachael Rakena, Peter Robinson, Wi Taepa, Cliff Whiting, Arnold Manaaki Wilson, Pauline Yearbury and more. Major new commissions will be presented in Toi Tū Toi Ora. These include an interactive exhibition by Charlotte Graham, a new sculptural installation by Ana Iti and a dramatic new public sculpture by Reuben Paterson. In the Gallery’s prominent North Atrium, an installation by Emily Karaka will be the largest commission of her career. The windows of the Gallery’s South Atrium, meanwhile, are the location for a colorful, two-storey-high installation by Sandy Adsett who utilizes Māori kōwhaiwhai patterns. A large-scale installation has been produced by Maureen Lander and Mata Aho Collective, and in the Gallery’s historic Mackelvie Gallery, Shane Cotton has co-curated an exhibition space that will place work by contemporary Māori artists alongside the Gallery’s historic art collection. Other major new works to be shown for the first time have been produced by Reweti Arapere; Shona Rapira-Davies; Matekino Lawless and Christina Wirihana; Te Rongo Kirkwood; Ngataiharuru Taepa; Areta Wilkinson and more.
Toi Tū Toi Ora: Contemporary Māori Art is organized by Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki and curated by Nigel Borell, Curator, Māori Art.