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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
- 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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