Whānau Mārama, created by artist Jade Townstead alongside Commercial Bay, is an exhibition featuring works by a group of Māori artists and researchers to showcase a multitude of perspectives that reflect politics, Indigenous ways of learning and contemporary art forms.
Retail stores will be reimagined as spaces for the artists and their taonga, with Commercial Bay's connecting pathways also becoming sites for storytelling and knowledge exchange.
Whānau Mārama will include uku, sculpture, painting, design, textiles, poetry, photography, sound, digital animation, a tā moko space Maharatia, and a library display of Māori pukapuka very rarely seen together.
You can find the full list of artists, more detail about them and their works, as well as where to find them on the Commercial Bay website now.
These works are strategies for remembering histories, documenting the present and re-imagining the future. Whānau Mārama represents Indigenous Futurisms.
Look out or listen in for soundscape over the common spaces, text on shop front windows, sculpture on countertops, shop tables and digital art. Whānau Mārama shines new light on what re-indigenisation, unity and visibility can be at Commercial Bay.
Follow the map to reveal the collaborations and find the nine whetū of Matariki.
Highlights to look out for
A talk by Rikki Solomon, expert on the Māori lunar calendar (maramataka) | July 6, 3pm
Rikki Solomon is an expert on the Māori lunar calendar and will explain the traditional Māori practice of using the calendar, which includes the star systems, moon cycles, tides and the environment, as a guide for when to carry out tasks. Winter, for example, was a time for reflection and planning, while the warmer months were good for harvesting food. Rikki shares this knowledge in a bid to help connect us back to the whenua and nature for guidance, and for the past year, he has run a small clinic in south Auckland teaching at-risk rangatahi and whānau how to use as a framework for improving mental health. Taking place at the Toroa Meeting Suites in the PwC Tower, you can register for tickets to this free talk now.
A talk on Māori healing with expert Donna Kerridge | July 6, 4.30pm - 5.30pm
Māori healer Donna Kerridge will share some of the practical applications of rongoā Māori (Māori healing practices. Donna (Ngāti Tahinga, Ngāti Mahuta, Ngāti Maniapoto) shares traditional principles about our health and how nature provides a map for managing our wellness. A background in both Health Science and New Zealand indigenous health systems, Kerridge's admiration for the wisdom of her ancestors has taught her that while the technology available in a modern world constantly changes, the values of her ancestors serve as a constant guide. In a world where everything is connected, our well-being starts with the whenua. Taking place at the Toroa Meeting Suites in the PwC Tower, tickets are free (only 60 seats so get in quick) and are available now.
Music by James Webster | July 1
James Webster is of Māori and European descent and is well known as a talented Māori arts practitioner, working with many mediums including wood, bone and stone (sculpting and carving) as well as paint, fibre and metal (mixed media) and tā moko (body adornment / tribal tattoo). James has created all his own Māori musical instruments and will be performing at Commercial Bay on Thursday July 1 from 1pm to 3pm (Civic Steps at 1pm, PwC Tower Lobby at 2pm and the Airbridge at 3pm) with some of the selected pieces he has made. Check out his website here.
Acapella performance by Te Waiora Morehu | July 3
As a budding leader in the world of kapa haka, Te Waiora has travelled abroad in opportunity to increase the global awareness and interest in the Māori culture. She believes that all Māori children who love kapa haka should be able to make a living from it and seeks to unlock the digital and global worlds in a deliberate and futuristic way. She thinks Māori kids prefer creativity over literacy and thinks the world is trending back to this realisation. As a passionate edu-tainer, Te Waiora feels the story of Māori is ready to be unlocked by a generation hungry to tell it. Check out her performances at Commercial Bay on Saturday July 3 at 1pm and 2.30pm on the Civic Steps (Queen Street entrance).
Musicians in Harbour Eats
There will also be two musicians playing at Harbour Eats - Laughton Kora on June 26, and Taye Williams on July 10, between 6pm and 9pm.