John Pule

Kehe tau hauaga foou (To all new arrivals)

Kehe tau hauaga foou (To all new arrivals) by John Pule

Artwork Detail

The artist is ambitious in his intention; he addresses global turbulence from an explicitly Pacific viewpoint. Of mural size, the work combines scenes of conflict with many images of human relationships in order to reveal a world that is living in confusion.

The painting acts like a huge chart that is mapping a Pacific perspective onto the nature of worldwide reality. Bombs and nuclear testing are contrasted with pollution and global warming. The painting gathers contemporary and historical narratives that express stories about the world by inviting us to visually ‘read’ what are seeing.

The work’s title - Kehe Tau Hauaga Foou (To all new arrivals) – confirms that Pule’s narratives are both symbolic and instructive. John Pule looks at our world as a place living with a mythic past juxtaposed with contemporary images of conflict and tumult. He utilises scenes from the New Testament as if they are small vignettes actually occurring today, in our everyday world. Other moments from the past well up into the present moment so as to speak with images from the past. Pule brings together diverse geographies and topographies as if they are physically located at the same place.

Kehe tau hauaga foou (To all new arrivals)
John Pule
Production date
enamel, oil, pencil, pastel, oil stick and ink on canvas
2700 x 10000 mm
Credit line
Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, gift of the Patrons of the Auckland Art Gallery, 2007
Accession no
Other ID
X2006/145 Old Accession Number
Copying restrictions apply
New Zealand Art
Display status
Not on display

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