Arnold Manaaki Wilson: Pou Ihi | Pou Whenua | Pou Tangata

Arnold Manaaki Wilson: Pou Ihi | Pou Whenua | Pou Tangata
Arnold Manaaki Wilson
Pou Ihi | Pou Whenua | Pou Tangata (installation view), 2014
Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki

Exhibition Details

Pou (posts) are important in Māori philosophy, art and life. Their physical form relates to the realm of Tāne (the god of the forest in Māori mythology) or the natural world, and they are made from wood. Literally used as markers in the landscape to delineate land boundaries or mark special sites, pou can be carved, adorned and painted or left in their natural state.

The late sculptor and painter Arnold Manaaki Wilson developed his style of pou to draw attention to their symbolic power and multiple meanings. He also used them to address issues of sustainability and the conservation of Aotearoa New Zealand's natural resources. He was a leading light and major figure in art education, and a champion of contemporary Māori art.

This exhibition looks at Wilson's sculptural explorations of two seminal periods in his art practice. Works in the exhibition will include sculptures he made from the mid-1950s – after Wilson obtained his Honours diploma in sculpture from the University of Auckland's Elam School of Fine Arts – and the mid-1980s, giving visitors an opportunity to see and experience at first hand the development of his practice and thinking as an artist.

At the entrance to the Gallery there are three finely carved examples of pou by Wilson which take on bird forms to welcome visitors into the Gallery and act as kaitiaki or guardians. These pou and the sculptural works in Pou Ihi | Pou Whenua | Pou Tangata are among his most groundbreaking artworks.

Date
Curated by
Ngahiraka Mason
Location
Level 1
Cost
Free entry

Related Artworks

View Artwork

On display

He Tangata, He Tangata
He Tangata, He Tangata

Arnold Manaaki Wilson

On display

Production date
1956
Medium
totara
Size (h x w)
1170 x 360 x 300 mm
Credit line
Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, purchased 1993
Accession no
1992/33/1
View Artwork

On display

Head
Head

Arnold Manaaki Wilson

On display

Production date
1958
Medium
perlite
Size (h x w)
270 x 150 x 105 mm
Credit line
Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki purchased 1993
Accession no
1992/33/5
View Artwork

On display

Tane Mahuta
Tane Mahuta

Arnold Manaaki Wilson

On display

Production date
1957
Medium
kauri
Size (h x w)
1210 x 213 x 148 mm
Credit line
Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, purchased 1992
Accession no
1992/33/2
View Artwork

On display

Te tu a te wahine
Te tu a te wahine

Arnold Manaaki Wilson

On display

Production date
1974
Medium
acrylic on hessian on chipboard
Size (h x w)
2430 x 1223 mm
Credit line
Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, on loan from St Stephen's and Queen Victoria Schools Trust Board
Accession no
L2010/12.1-2
View Artwork

Not on display

Whangai 1
Whangai 1

Arnold Manaaki Wilson

Production date
1984
Medium
wood
Size (h x w)
2400 x 240 mm
Credit line
Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, purchased 2014
Accession no
2014/27/1
View Artwork

Not on display

Whangai 2
Whangai 2

Arnold Manaaki Wilson

Production date
1984
Medium
wood
Size (h x w)
2230 x 240 mm
Credit line
Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, purchased 2014
Accession no
2014/27/2
View Artwork

Not on display

Whangai 3
Whangai 3

Arnold Manaaki Wilson

Production date
1984
Medium
wood
Size (h x w)
1960 x 240 mm
Credit line
Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, purchased 2014
Accession no
2014/27/3