Te Nohoaka o Tukiauau


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Ryan Williams


Not specified


South Otago High School




Te Nohoaka o Tukiauaua


Acrylic paint on canvas


Through this artwork I have captured the important time periods and different guardianships over my tūrangawaewae, whilst looking at its relation to my identity. I looked at ancestral inheritance and the effect my ancestors' actions have on me and how they affected the first settlers of New Zealand. To showcase this, I used frames as a vessel for conveying the different periods of ownership over my tūrangawaewae. I used pattern and cultural symbolism to showcase the different periods and look at the relationship between my identity. The detailed carved frame, Matariki stars, and traditional boats used as the Maori sailed to New Zealand. The next frame shows the sense of guardianship the first settlers had for the land - tangata whenuatanga and kaitiakitanga - and how the land thrived. I am depicted at peace with the land in a time when we were one with the land. This time period was under Kāti Māmoe and Ngāi Tahu ownership/guardianship, where the land was able to thrive. The heart signifies this period of time as an example for a future that we could live in and a better way of life, a way of life that respects the land. The DNA used shows part of my identity - science and investigation where I am looking at restoring native wetlands (kūkūwai and wairepo) and the correlation with improved water quality as I do monthly testing in Dunedin laboratories. The next frame shows the decimation my ancestors did to the land, draining the water and using the native wetlands (wairepo and kūkūwai) as farmland. The tartan used in the sky, the kilt I am wearing and the Scottish flag, are used as symbolism to represent the annexation of the land and the destruction they caused. The next (last frame) showcases myself in the future trying to fix the mess my ancestors have caused to my tūrangawaewae and their lack of guardianship over the land. I am depicted in my science lab coat with safety goggles on and holding a micropipette symbolising the future and hope to restore the once thriving wetlands (wairepo and kūkūwai). I am depicted in a traditional woven cloak (with aronui tāniko pattern showing the investigation into my inner self) not part of any frame in the present looking through the progression/succession of ownership of my tūrangawaewae. Overall, this work symbolises the visual representation of my inner thoughts (hence use of aronui tāniko pattern), and the further understanding of who I am (Ko wai au?). I have completed this work as part of the Level 1 Visual Art Mini pilot.

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