M a C VIII: Writing MAORI ART

gallery invitation
© Rangihīroa Panoho, 2020-2022. No part of this document (text or imagery) is free to be copied, plagiarised or shared for publication or for uses neither intended nor agreed on by the author without his express permission. Details for writing to the author are as follows: blueskypanoho@icloud.com The opinions expressed are those of Dr Panoho and not those of former employers or industry colleagues

 

BlueOrbit

rangihīroa,  he āmionga kikorangi, ‘the blue orbit’, 2018

 

E ngā kaipānui tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou, tēnā ra koutou katoa. Ngā whakawhetai ki a koutou mo te awhi me te tautoko hoki. Hari te ngakau nei e hoko ana koutou ki tā tātou pukapuka. Naaku te rourou, nau te rourou, ka kī te kete.

The following text comprises notes used to prepare for a presentation of ‘Writing Māori Art’ at the City Gallery, Wellington, 25 August 2016. They explore the background to the creation of MAORI ART: History, Architecture, Landscape and Theory, Batemans, 2015/2018. Some key themes and motivations for the work are discussed. ‘Writing Maori Art’ has been edited for this particular platform however, it largely follows the question/response format used in the original kōrero. I am offering this as a kōha to recognise the many hundreds on the publisher’s facebook site that have supported this project and the many who have been visiting this companion site to peruse the MaC I-X blogs. I hope the kaupapa is useful to those searching for authorial intent.

 

Presentation
Panoho, Leonard, Caldwell, Brunt and Tamati-Quennell

Writing MAORI ART

It was difficult to know what to prepare here. I wondered who might be attending so I found myself asking questions throughout this kōrero.  I have largely kept that initial structure involving enquiry and response. This imagining ones audience and then writing to / for that readership or group is what I think writing a book is about. There were other influences as well. The panel members (Megan Tamati-Quennell, MONZ and Peter Brunt, VUW), that follow this talk, were also interested in hearing about the book’s central river metaphor so I have included some discussion on awa. If you are looking for a brief explanation of the river try this video link.

Lorraine Steele, (Lighthouse NZ PR Book Publicity) assigned by my publisher Batemans to help market ‘Maori Art’, told me prior to its initial launch in June 2015 at Te Uru that books, particularly art books in New Zealand, don’t sell themselves. No great revelation for those involved in publishing here tonight. You would immediately understand the role authorial self-promotion plays in marketing New Zealand books, films indeed all manner of creative activity in Aotearoa. In Auckland, the situation seems grim. With a city of nearly 1.5 million people there is no major window for New Zealand books on Queen Street, or apart from Unity Books further back, in the central city. Our publicist suggested I take a few months out to travel meet, greet, sign and sell. She was particularly keen on areas of the country with community ties to the book. What sounded like grim advice then makes good business sense now.

So here is my delayed response, eventually following marketing advice. In returning here to Wellington I am re-visiting a site important early on in the creation, the conceptualising, the illustration and in the production of ‘Maori Art’. I lived locally. I taught up the road on Tasman Street at the local Design School. My original publishing contracts were sent here. My first manuscript was created in this town. It was here I began describing to alarmed, possibly bemused readers, I was writing a book on Māori Art that would be centered around the metaphor of a river. My first readers Mary Barr, Jayne Sayle, Garry Nicholas and Luit Bieringa were and still all are locals. I curated a major Māori and a Pacific show, for the Dowse Art Museum and for the City Gallery respectively, prior to living here and I am grateful to Robert Leonard and the City Gallery for letting me continue this legacy in not simply celebrating curating but also writing ‘Maori Art’ with you.

 

WHY WRITE MAORI ART?

 

So why write a book on Māori Art? Indeed, why write any book? At risk of personal scrutiny I quote British novelist George Orwell’s essay ‘Why I Write‘  because his account of authorship and motivation provides a useful structure here to work with and against. Writing post world war II (summer 1946) Orwell lays down 4 drives: sheer egotism, aesthetic enthusiasm, historical impulse and political purpose.  Some areas resonate more than others. I test a couple of these ideas.

Continue reading “M a C VIII: Writing MAORI ART”

MAORI ART book Television & Radio coverage

For the convenience of those visiting the site this post contains 5 samples of video, Television and Radio material in chronological sequence 2015-2016 covering the publication ‘MAORI ART: History, Architecture, Landscape and Theory‘,  Batemans, Auckland, launched Te Uru, Waitakere Contemporary Art Gallery, Titirangi, Auckland, 10 June 2015.

The publishers facebook site (link above) has all the background to the making of the Film Construction book launch video with Director Perry Bradley and his team: Kia rere tonu ngā wai o te awa. ‘The River Must Flow’. Producer -Felicia Brunsting, DOP – James Rua, Production Assistant – Ferris Bradley, Stills Photographer – Belinda Bradley. Locations, Kingsland\Central Kaipara, 16 May 2015

Māori art book illustrates ‘visual whakapapa’‘Expert art historian, and our first ever Māori PhD recipient in Art History, Rangihiroa Panoho has just released a new book with a unique focus on Māori art and how it conveys whakapapa through visual mediums.’ Reporter: Manawa Wright, Te Kārere, TVNZ, location: Pukekawa, Auckland Domain, 10 June 2015

publicity Maori Art book
RNZ Interview Panoho/Ryan 2015 Maori Art launch

How to look at Māori art in the 21st century,  Interview with Kathryn Ryan, Nine to Noon, 12 June 2015. Link here:  http://www.radionz.co.nz/national/programmes/ninetonoon/audio/201758148/how-to-look-at-maori-art-in-the-21st-century 

‘Maori Art’ book, Interview Matai Smith and author, Good Morning, TVNZ, 28 July 2015

MAORI ART wins AAANZ Prize for best writing by Māori\Pacific author, Australia National University, Canberra. Video : PIHIRAU PRODUCTIONS Ltd, 3 December, 2016

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AWARDS ‘ngaa whakawhiwhinga’


‘Māori Art’ winner AAANZ book prize presented at the School of Art, Australia National University, Canberra, 3 December 2016 . This is an international award in the discipline of Art History.

Best Art Writing by a New Zealand Māori or Pacific Islander

($500 supported by Christchurch Art Gallery)

Jenny Harper Congratulates Rangihiroa Panoho as an AAANZ Award winner

This prize was awarded to the best art writing, whether in the form of a book, article or essay, by a New Zealand Maori or Pacific Islander.

'This is an exciting and innovative addition to the discipline of Māori and Pacific art history volumes. The expansive vision of the author deserves to be acknowledged and rewarded.' 

Maia Nuku, Associate Curator, Oceanic Art, Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York

link to full report in Nuku quote above or try the AAANZ net site below:

http://aaanz.info/prizes/

AAANZ annual prizes recognise the best in arts writing and research across Australia and New Zealand. The awards cover a broad array of arts publishing and acknowledge the contribution of both emerging and established scholars and artists. The categories include prizes for books, catalogues, artist books and Indigenous art writing. The prizes are sponsored by a number of universities, art museums, associations and publishing bodies around Australia and New Zealand. The prizes recognise the following. Originality and rigour of scholarship. Contribution to knowledge in the area and impact on scholarly debate in the field. Significance of the topic to the field and to adjacent disciplines. Significance and originality of arts research. Quality of the design and production values of the publication. Ability to convey complex ideas to wider audiences.

Ngā Kupu Māori awards, Auckland Museum 3 October 2016

Tracy Borgfelt, Batemans Associate Publisher (right) Kikorangi and Adrianne Panoho (left), Ngā Kupu Māori awards, Auckland Museum 3 October 2016

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Whānaunga Amokura Panoho (left) Kikorangi, Adrianne and Rangihīroa Panoho, Ngā Kupu Māori awards, Auckland Museum 3 October 2016