Exhibition shines spotlight on Kiribati artworks
Tungaru: The Kiribati Project, an exhibition on show at the Auckland Museum, will have special interest for Aucklanders connected to the Pacific island nation.
There are just over 650 Kiritbati islanders living in Auckland.
The exhibition is produced by contemporary New Zealand artists Chris Charteris and Jeff Smith, as well as the Auckland War Memorial Museum and the Mangere Arts Centre.
It will display traditional artefacts from the museum’s Pacific collection, alongside a selection of new works from Charteris, an interactive Kiribati warrior created by Smith, and archival film footage of Kiribati.
In conjunction with the display at the museum, a six-week exhibition is on at the Mangere Arts Centre, which includes items from the museum’s collections as well as a selection of works by Charteris and Smith.
The project was born out of Charteris’ desire to return home to Kiribati, meet family and experience life on the island.
‘‘I was really taken by the simplicity of life on the outer islands,’’ he says.
‘‘Their lifestyle now is much the same as it has been for centuries. They live in a completely sustainable way even with very few natural resources available.’’
Alongside the exhibitions will be public programmes at both venues, including talks, workshops, and a Kiribati symposium at Auckland Museum on October 11.
There is also a new book, Tungaru: The Kiribati Proj- ect, which includes contributions from arts writer Mark Amery, poet Teresia Teaiwa, Niwa scientist Doug Ramsay and Marion Melk Koch, as well as photos from the journey to Kiribati and the artworks
The exhibition is at Auckland Museum from July 5 until November 23. Admission is free.