Bunnie’s Blue Moon

06 Jul - 13 Oct 2024

Bunnie’s Blue Moon marries threads of Arapeta Hākura’s inquiries into kākahu (adornment and fibre practices), hekengaru (surfing) and waiata wawata (songs of longing or desire).

Ka kōtuia ngā miro pākiki a Arapeta Hākura e Bunnie’s Blue Moon ki ngā tikanga mahi kākahu, ki te tikanga hekengaru me te tikanga waiata wawata. E whakahau ana hēnei tikanga i te whakatonu me te whakahōu tonu i ngā tikanga matū i roto i te ao Māori, me te tūhura hoki i ngā tikanga o te takatāpuitanga hei ara mārama, hei ara mōhio anō ki tōna ao.

He makawe takatāpui e whakairia ana ki Bunnie’s Blue Moon i te Matapihi o Mua – he uru whakapīwari kua hangaia ki te kiekie, i te taha o tētehi oho – he papa eke ngaru rānei – kua tāreia ki te rākau whau, me tētehi āpitihanga e tohu ana i tētehi ārei hīrere. Ko te kohinga nei e whakaahua ana i ngā rawa ka hua mai i ngā tai e rua, arā, ko ngā tahatika o māuru me marangai o Te Ika-a-Māui: ko te tai o Omaha, te takiwā o te kāinga o te whānau o te ringatoi, arā, ko ngā kaitiaki o te takiwā i kāpuia ai te kiekie, otinoa ko ngā wai o te rohe o Taranaki, e noninoni nei, e rangahau nei hoki te ringatoi, i te tau kua hori.

I te roanga o te terenga o tēnei whakaaturanga, ka whakaaturia he terenga kiriata poto i te whare pikitia o Len Lye, i te taha o te hōtaka kiriata matua. He whakamānawa i ngā reanga takatāpui, i ngā kaiwhakaari takatāpui, me ngā kaiekengaru i hua mai i mua i te ringatoi, ā, he whakakahore me te whakaatu hoki i ngā whakaaro kino – nō te wā o te taenga mai o te iwi Pākehā me hōna whakaaro he pakari tonu, he whakataetae, he Pākehā anahe te hunga kuhu ki tēnei kakari.

He hokinga mai tēnei kiriata, a Bunnie’s Blue Moon – i hōna matarau katoa: ko te renarena anō i ngā taukaea ki Taranaki mai i te wā i wehe ai ngā tūpuna o te ringatoi, a Hōkapa rāua ko Merepeka, i te wā o te pakanga whenua i ngā tau 1860, ā, he tuku ara hoki kia wāia ai rātou, otinoa tātou, ki ngā horopaki me te hari takatāpui i te tahatika o te moana.

Bunnie’s Blue Moon marries threads of Arapeta Hākura’s inquiries into kākahu (adornment and fibre practices), hekengaru (surfing) and waiata wawata (songs of longing or desire). For Hākura, these practices speak to continuity and continual renewal within Māori material practice, and explore and affirm takatāpuitanga as a means of inhabiting and knowing the world.

Installed in the Open Window Bunnie’s Blue Moon comprises a makawe takatāpui - a beehive wig constructed from kiekie, alongside an oho - or surfboard - carved from whau wood, and textile installation which references the form of a shower curtain. The gathered works represent a material outcome from an inquiry that spans two coastal sites, on either side of Te Ika-a-Māui: the shoreline of Omaha, north-east of Tāmaki Makaurau, where the artist’s whānau are katiaki and from which the kiekie was gathered, and the waters of the Taranaki region, around and within which the artist has spent the last year researching and building relationships.

Throughout the exhibition’s season, a series of short films will be screened in the Len Lye Cinema alongside our regular programme of feature films. Honouring generations of high-camp, high-glamour performers and wave riders who preceded the artist, these films work to undo and remake the tropes and conventions of the surf film - lodged within the settler colonial imaginary as a masculine, competitive, and primarily white, endeavour.

Bunnie’s Blue Moon unfolds as a hokinga mai - or homecoming - in multiple senses: in re-establishing a connection to Taranaki following the departure of the artist’s tūpuna Hōkapa and Merepeka during the Taranaki Land Wars in the 1860s, as well as in offering routes to refamiliarise themselves, and us, with the nuance and potential of takatāpui joy at the edge of the moana.

Public Programmes 

Sat 06 Jul 2024 | 1:00PM | Artist Kōrero: Arapeta Hākura’s Bunnie’s Blue Moon