Para Matchitt

Ringatu/Te Wepu

Ringatu/Te Wepu by Para Matchitt

Artwork Detail

This sculpture by Para Matchitt portrays Rongowhakaata leader, military leader, prophet, religious founder Te Kooti Arikirangi Te Turuki sitting on a white horse rearing on its hind legs. Clutched in the figure’s hand is ‘Te Wepu’ (the whip) the infamous flag captured by Te Kooti during a skirmish with Colonial forces.

The symbols used by Te Kooti and now Matchitt carry numerous narratives. The crescent moon is a portent of a new world. The red cross is the fighting cross of the Archangel Michael. The triangle or mountain represents Aotearoa New Zealand, and the bleeding heart, the suffering of the Māori people.

Para’s art also draws on ideas of reparation and hope as part of his visual language. The mystery and deeds of Kooti is his most potent and enduring subject.

Ringatu/Te Wepu
Para Matchitt
Production date
plate steel, industrial paint
2370 mm
Credit line
Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, gift of the Patrons of the Auckland Art Gallery, 2010
Accession no
Copying restrictions apply
New Zealand Art
Display status
Not on display

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