Waka and Wave, 1998 – 2006
Whangarei, New Zealand
In collaboration with Te Warihi Hetaraka. A comment on colonisation…
The waka was designed by Te Warihi and is positioned with the bow in the water at high tide, as if being launched into the Hatea Stream. Whereas I designed the stone waves which invade the shore from the Hatea Stream, partially submerging the waka and finally, like a tsunami wave, dispersing over the land.
Te Warihi Hetaraka is a Ngati Wai tohunga, a specialist in the traditional Maori arts, wood carving in particular. He is also knowledgeable in all aspects of things Maori. We have been friends since the early seventies and, as I had with Diggeress Te Kanawa, I was awaiting an opportunity for us to work together. Through Te Warihi, the project was subject to as much Maori consultation and assessment as it was from Pakeha. Karakia to lift the tapu on the completed sculpture were carried out predawn by Te Warihi, Te Ihi (Parawhau) and Fred Tito (Parawhau).