Whiti Te Ra refers to Ka Mate Ka Mate the iconic Māori haka composed by legendary Ngati Toa Rangatira Te Rauparaha around 1820. The haka celebrates life over death and Te Rauparaha's lucky escape from death. It is said that Te Rauparaha was hidden in a kumara pit to avoid his enemies finding him, and when he emerged he was met by Te Whareangi, a very hairy man.
Ka mate, ka mate! ka ora! ka ora!
Ka mate! ka mate! ka ora! ka ora!
Tēnei te tangata pūhuruhuru
Nāna nei i tiki mai whakawhiti te rā
Ā, upane! ka upane!
Ā, upane, ka upane, whiti te ra!
- Whiti Te Ra
- Production date
- oil stick on board
- 550 x 1290 mm
- Credit line
- Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, purchased 2008
- Accession no
- Copying restrictions apply
- New Zealand Art
- Display status
- Not on display
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