Monday 30 May 2022
A major new wānanga toi Māori, Toi Te Kupu: Whakaahuatanga, is to be held in Tāmaki Makaurau to coincide with Matariki. Participants will hear from 30 speakers from across the country on a range of topics, as detailed in the newly-released programme.
The kaupapa of this wānanga is reflected in the name, whakaahuatanga, to transform and metamorphose, and in the timing across Matariki, the beginning of the new year in the Māori lunar calendar. Hosted by Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, and held at the Te Pokapū | Aotea Centre, this Māori arts wānanga will be held across two days, 15–16 June 2022.
‘Toi Te Kupu sits under the mantle of whakaahuatanga, the notion of transformation and metamorphosis as evidenced by our tūpuna. Under this, we seek to provide platforms for Māori artists and arts-sector professionals to bring their voices to the community,’ says Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki’s Senior Curator, Māori Art, Nathan Pōhio (Waitaha, Kāti Mamoe, Kāi Tahu, Ngāti Kahungunu, Kāti Pākehā).
‘The purpose of this wānanga is to reinforce the brilliance and depth mātauranga Māori bring to customary and contemporary Māori art, as well as send our artists off to their studios, laptops, practice rooms and pā harakeke feeling like they are part of a community, reinvigorated and inspired.’
The two-day wānanga provides opportunity to hear from keynote speakers Ngāhuia te Awekōtuku (Te Arawa, Ngāi Tūhoe and Waikato) and Robert Jahnke (Ngāi Taharora, Te Whānau a Iritekura, Te Whānau a Rakairoa o Ngāti Porou).
Alongside the opening address and panel discussions, attendees will have the opportunity to listen to two ‘in conversation’ sessions with Rānui Ngārimu (Ngāi Tahu, Ngāti Mutunga) and John Miller (Ngāpuhi,Ngaitewake-ki-Uta).
Following each day’s opening address is a suite of panel discussions from kaikōrero, including Deidre Brown (Ngāpuhi, Ngāti Kahu), Natalie Robertson (Ngāti Porou, Clann Dhònnchaidh), Moana Tipa (Kai Tahu, Kati Mamoe, Ngāti Kahungunu) and Kura Te Waru Rewiri (Ngāti Kahu, Ngāpuhi, Ngāti Kauwhata, Ngāti Rangi). Also hear from Shannon Te Ao (Ngāti Tūwharetoa), Elisapeta Heta (Ngātiwai, Waikato Tainui), Nova Paul (Te Uriroroi, Te Parawhau, Te Māhurehure ki Whatitiri), Rachel Shearer (Rongowhakaata, Te Aitanga ā Māhaki, Pākehā) and more.
Panel chairs include Carla Ruka ( Ngāti Whatua, Ngāpuhi) and Kereama Te Ua (Te Whakatōhea, Tūhoe, Te Whānau a Apanui, Tūwharetoa, TeAitanga a Mahaki, Te Rarawa, Te Aupouri, Ngāti Pākehā).
Tickets include daily morning and afternoon tea, as well as lunch on site at Te Pokapū | Aotea Centre. At the end of day one, participants are invited to a pō whakawhanaunga at Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki with the chance to network, enjoy drinks, kai and further conversation, along with exclusive after-hours access to the Declaration: A Pacific Feminist Agenda exhibition.
Te Arepa Morehu (Ngāti Whātua, Ngāpuhi), Head of Kaupapa Māori at Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki says, ‘Toi Te Kupu is an opportunity to bring diverse thoughts together to wānanga experiences leading up to now and explore the opportunities haere ake nei – into the future.’
Dr Valance Smith (Ngāpuhi, Waikato, Ngāti Haina, Ngāti Pākehā), Chair of Haerewa, the Gallery’s Māori Advisory Committee, says, ‘At the heart of Toi Te Kupu are Māori artists, their art and their stories capturing people’s hearts and minds, bringing issues to the fore, engaging with people, and invoking a palpable sense of connection that transcends diverse ways of thinking and worldviews.’
Toi Te Kupu: Whakaahuatanga aims to celebrate and showcase the transformative power of mātauranga Māori as expressed through art, exhibition-making and wider creative practices, while increasing the dialogue between Māori artists on what is critically important for themselves and their communities today. The wānanga will include space available for booking by artists and artist-led rōpū, to support the gathering as a means for further independent kōrero.
Toi Te Kupu: Whakaahuatanga is organised by Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki with the support of Auckland Council’s Māori Outcomes Fund.