A celebration of

Kapi-Mana News - - NEWS - By AN­DREA O’NEIL

Awealth of Maori art is on dis­play at Te Wananga O Aotearoa this week, as stu­dents show the cul­mi­na­tion of their year’s work.

In pre­vi­ous years the wananga’s arts stu­dents have showed their wares at Pataka, but this year the polytech­nic is mak­ing use of its am­ple dis­play space on cam­pus.

Hun­dreds of works make up the ex­hi­bi­tion, many of them for sale.

Harakeke weav­ing, paint­ing, sculp­tures of clay, stone, gourd and wood, quilts, kites and pa­per art all make for a sub­stan­tial show.

Ti­tahi Bay stu­dent Evelina Simi has three art­works on dis­play: a paint­ing, a stone sculp­ture, and a burnt wood trip­tych.

All fea­ture tur­tles, which rep­re­sent her brother, who died last year.

‘‘Each crea­ture or line has a mean­ing for me,’’ she said.

Mrs Simi has worked plenty of Pa­cific themes into her art, in­clud­ing flow­ers and plaited ropes to rep­re­sent her par­ents.

‘‘I like keep­ing my cul­ture in my pieces,’’ she said.

‘‘ It en­cour­ages you to look deeper in your whaka­papa; who you are and how your an­ces­tors came to be in Aotearoa. It’s a way of ex­press­ing your taonga, your trea­sure.’’

Stu­dents and their fam­i­lies take a lot of pride in see­ing their work ex­hib­ited, said Mrs Simi, who also works as the wananga’s events co-or­di­na­tor.

The level of skill on show was ev­i­dent in small fea­tures like the han­dles of a kete or the waist­band of a pi­upiu ( hapa kaka

Photo: AN­DREA O’NEIL

Fam­ily fo­cus: Art stu­dent Evelina Simi has sym­bol­ised her fam­ily in her art­works, on dis­play at Te Wananga O Aotearoa’s end-of-year ex­hi­bi­tion this week.

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