Week 11 Blog Task

The contrast between Western identification of gender comparing it too Maori’s identity prier to colonialism is quite shocking. The values that women held in Maori society made them equal to men, and the lack of hierarchy of gender in the community is a strong contrast to Western society. “The struggles for our people, our lands, our worlds, ourselves that are part of our daily lives as Maori women, they never just about being Maori or just being women but are a combination of what those mean.” Pg13.Naomi Simmonds. Due to being colonised Maori women lost a lot of what it truely means to be a Maori women, instead they have “engaged in the struggle over how to live in the multiple worlds created by our colonial history” Pg14.Naomi Simmonds. Before Westerners came to New Zealand shores both Maori men and women were considered to be “essential parts in the collective whole…that linked Maori people back to the beginning of the world.” Pg1. Ani Mikare. Essentially saying that you couldn’t have a Maori society with one or the other, therefore expressing the need for gender equality. When westerners came “Maori girls were thus being filtered, not only for manual labour but also to fulfil the subordinate domestic roles deemed, within European culture, as appropriate for females.” Pg.3 Ani Mikare. By controlling the youth it develops a new society in the future one that conflicts true Maori culture.

Mikare, Ani. “Māori women: Caught in the contradictions of a colonised reality”

Simmonds, Naomi. “Mana wahine: Decolonising politics”





Week 10 Blog task

How can we tell when we have created something that could be considered appropriation? In this modern world inspiration is all around us but there is a difference between being inspired and taking someone else’s art or significant cultural identities. What people fall into the trap of is the lack of acknowledgement, this causes problem for the artists/ culture they have appropriated. Engles Swarzpauls clearly outlines the problems that come out of lack of acknowledgement “Sony or Leggo who have no response of any forward moving or engaging nature … they do not honestly choose to honour our art…, but rather EXPLOIT and MAKE MONEY from it”Pg 4.This highlights how the lack of acknowledgment and communication  to the Maori culture has made them feel betrayed and frustrated. This is also because in the game The Mark of Kri had portrayed Rau is violent “taking off limbs, cutting people in half with an axe, bashing head into a wall.” Pg3. This violence is the main feature of Rau, making it hard for players to be able to identify with him other than through violence. “Limits the choices of identification available to Maori men.”Pg3. Which therefore overall creates stereotypes that Maori men are violent. The game designers augured that Rau wasn’t Maori, despite having key Maori cultural identities displayed. “From a Māori perspective, Rau’s name, moko and taiaha (spear) are Māori, and real enough to be concerned about their appropriation and use”Pg.3


Engels Schwarzpaul Tina”Dislocating Wiremu and Rau: The wild man in virtual worlds” School of Art and Design AUT University.


Artists working in New Zealand who have come from Asian whakapapa express their creativity through using social, political, and cultural experiences. Engaging strongly with the idea of hybridity, the artists are able to critically represent the complexities of society.  Korean born artist Yona Lee creates large scale sculptures that feel like a maze plucked from the industrial commuting society. She is able to communicate her social experiences with the viewer by making her artworks interactive. Politically Yona represents the confusing world we live in and how hard it is to make sense of it all. The overall cultural context is a “third space” where both her Asian whakapapa and New Zealand culture meets to resemble the identity of the world she lives in.

Yona Lee is able to reflect the social aspect of society by introducing the ability for her large scale artworks to be interactive. By creating a space that allows the viewer to engage with the artwork, it allows the people themselves to be considered part of the artwork itself. When there is an absence of humans in the artwork it doesn’t take away from the greatness of the sculpture, but in fact subtracts some of main representations of social context. The colossal size of In Transit (Arrival) by Yona Lee brings us the understanding that “social context of art is a crucial part of the relationship between art and culture, as well as that between art and society.”Pg. 9. Lewis, Phillip. Yona is both representing society but also communicating the relationship between society, art and culture. We see this expressed by the use of steel tubes. Throughout In Transit (Arrival) steel tubes have been used to create majority of the structure. What the railing represents is control, in society the railing is often used to guide people through a building or confine people from restricted areas. Though it might not seem too obvious to the viewer that they are also being controlled as they walk through Yona’s work. Yona has specifically designed the structure in a certain way that forces her viewers to see what she wants them to see, when she wants them to see it. This highlights that socially we are a submissive society without even realising it. “Not only is the social context of art the locus of the relationship between art and society, but it is a main junction point of the process by which the art forms are transmitted through time.”Pg. 9. Lewis, Phillip. This unravels the strong idea that core of the work revolves around how society is portrayed to Yona herself. It’s busy, compelling, cluttered but organised. Yona’s representation allows the outside world to come into the work and fill in the gaps of society; the people. Since people is what completes the work, her ideas of society will able to remain precent in time forever. This is simply because we can’t have a society without people.

The world we live in is very confusing, it’s loud and dangerous but it is also full of potential. Politically we can see how Yona’s work communicates ideas of the government and society as hole, but how? The government is a structure, it holds the people of society together and it is a representation of authority and control. By looking of how Yona has deliberately designed her sculpture with the ideas of government in mind we understand the reality of her work is to manipulate the audience to feel as if they are part of something. “To be effec- tive today, an organization must be lean, fast on its feet, responsive to its customers, capable of adjusting to constant change, able to improve productivity continually. In other words, it needs to be entrepreneurial rather than bureaucratic.” Yona’s work shines through the ideas of fast on its feet, and capable to adjusting to constant change by the way the structure feels and looks. Even though the structure doesn’t actually change but it never at one point feels like society has paused time, but rather it’s a sample of the pulse of society itself. You can understand this by looking closely at the objects you find throughout the structure, both domestic and industrial appliances are specifically placed continuously, and are purposely connected to the steel tubes. Yona has done this to highlight to the viewer how everything in society has a place and everything is connected together through a greater system. Just like how society is connected to the government system. The world we live in sometimes is hard to make sense of, but when you look closer at the details of the world; the systems, the networks, the organisation of everything. You begin to understand that all those things are essential to the progression of society. If you take away the steel tubes in Yona’s work all you’re left with is domestic and industrial appliances on the floor. If you take away both domestic and industrial appliances you only left with the steel tubes. Neither of them would be able to communicate the systems of government or society without each other. Just like government wouldn’t be able to work without essential key systems. “People might need to be “reminded” that they live in a society and were “confined” by law to their mutual obligations” Yona represents key systems to remind us that the world we live in is controlled. She is representing through confining her audience and choosing which way they should walk as an example of the world we live in. We are obligated to work and earn money, like we are obligated to walk in one certain direction through her work. Not only has Yona manipulated us to feel like we are part of something, she makes us realise that we were always part of something in the first place.


The cultural significance of In Transit (Arrival) brings together both Yona’s whakapapa  of Asian Korean decent, and the culture of Aotearoa. When coming to New Zealand she studied Art and gaining a MFA from Elam School of Fine Arts. She also spent alot of time traveling in Seoul. “I started thinking about the development of the transportation and organisation and how people try to overcome the limit of time and space.” Yona Lee is expressing that she was inspired by how people commute in society. “When you’re in an unknown city you realise that you spend a lot of time on trains and buses just going somewhere.” The culture of commuting is very common on a global scale, therefore allowing people from all around the world to be able to find familiarities in the artwork. By looking closely at the artwork it is hard to isolate one culture, this is because you could call this type of art “the third space”. This space can be expressed as a hybridity of culture. It is a space allows two seperate cultures to come together “The process of cultural hybridity gives rise to something different, something new and unrecognisable, a new area of negotiation of meaning and representation.” We can see this throughout Yona’s work through how she draws from the private and public eye of the world, together they blur the representation of society and therefore transforms the idea of what we believe  society to be, into something we don’t even truely recognise. Yona uses lights as a domestic symbol, along with coat hangers as well, keeping in mind she has chosen all objects specifically,  she also pairs the same space with bus stop buttons, and train hangers. Overall the use of both domestic and industrial appliances creates a juxtaposition. This juxtaposition resembles how society feels so conflicting, so confusing, like being young in a new city. Yona is bringing through her experience with her travels in Souel with her experiences that she would of felt from her domestic life. “Utilizing multiple, diverse, and, even, conflicting mediational tools promotes the emergence of third spaces, or zones of development, and, thus, expands learning” This expresses that Yonas work is a symbol of the hybridity of both New Zealand culture and her whakapapa. To reinforced her New Zealand cultural identity she chose to locate her sculpture in Te Tuhi art space. “It works well with my concept because I’m collaging different spaces into one space.” the building is very special to her “If you walk along the corridor sometimes you will hear people dancing or a sermon of someone preaching, and then there are art classes.” Overall the choice of the building represents how art as hole is important to her and therefore apart of her identity. In Transit (Arrival) communicates a “Third space” for the combination of both cultures as one hole identity.

In conclusion Yona Lee has created a piece of work that is unique. Never before have I seen such a large scale sculpture that communicates strongly about social context, political context and cultural context. Yona is an artist who has let society play with the idea of society. Using steel tubes to confine us and lead us where she want us to be lead, and using domestic and industrial appliances to communicate both the public and private eye of society. She brings her audience into a neutral space, lets them adventure through the steel rails. Yona brings into her work the experiences of her life, her Asian whakapapa and New Zealand culture. Together all the ideas and symbolism generates strong representations of what she believes society to be. Overall I find Yona’s sculpture a great understanding of society, we simply can not have a society without people interacting with the systems put in place.















Blog Task week 9

A mixture between two races is commonly defined as hybridity. In attempts to deeply understand the relationship between identity and hybridity you have first understand cultural difference. Homi K. Bhabha explains that “the idea that cultures are diverse & that in some sense the diversity of cultures is a good and positive thing and ought to be encouraged.” Homi further explains that this social attitude creates a “musée imaginaire”. He then reveals that cultural diversity allows a dominant culture to be host “these other cultures are fine, but we must be able to locate them within our grid.” In contrast to this, cultural difference is the attitude that acknowledges the differences between cultures and understands that “Even impossible and counterproductive, to try & fit together different forms of culture & to pretend that they can easily coexist.” Therefore for hybridity to form no one culture can not be dominant, instead two cultures have to come together in what Homi describes “the third space”.  This third space allows something new to grow, it allows a new culture to become essential to society. Homi unpacks the idea that the process of identifying something relates to the process of hybridity. “Bears the the traces of those feelings and practises which inform it.” This essentially means that hybridity uses the process of identification to allow an understanding of the new culture to be originated. Without this process the two cultures won’t be able to merge into something new.


Rutherford, Jonathan. “Identity, community, culture, difference” Lawrence & Wishart London. 1990.




Blog Task week 8


In response to Wall’s critical analysis of the representation of  Maori in the media I have come to the conclusion that stereotypes play a huge role in getting a relatable messages across. In relation to Wall’s text both Ghost Chips and Boy portray Maori as the stereotypical comic Other. Originally this stereotype was derived from colonial times “initial explorers caricatured Maori as having childlike simplicity coupled with a fun-loving disposition.” You can see throughout both examples this stereotype shinning through. In Ghost Chips the clever simplicity of “you know I can’t grab your ghost chips” generates a playful structure to the Ad. By representing this “comic Other” Ayson was able to successfully communicate to his targeted audience, he was aiming to connect to young male Maori drivers. He needed New Zealand to understand that “it was choice to stop a mate from driving drunk”. Comparing this to Boy who also uses the “Comic Other” stereotype, we can understand the structure of 1980’s Maori society. “The film contains a great deal of offhand information about this Maori community. Much of it is about how global pop culture has imposed an imaginary media reality on children’s lives.” Waititi was representing a realistic portrayal of Maori society and people for the times. Deeper ideas such as expressions of lost and grief made audiences understand how reality isn’t picture perfect. Waititi used comedy to simplify the complexities of life, making the audience feel like they are watching the film through the eyes of child rather than an adult. “The comic Other may be seen as a more positive stereotype” and throughout both examples, Maori were portrayed positively.

Asyon, Steve. Legend (Ghost Chips) Safety Ad. NZ Transport Agency. 2011.

Waititi, Taika, Boy. Whenua Films
Unison Films
New Zealand Film Production Fund,
New Zealand Film Commission,
New Zealand On Air,
Te Mangai Paho, Transmission Films. March 2010.

Week 7 blog task

Throughout the texts many considerations regarding culture and identity were raised. Wendt, Albert looked closely at colonisation in regards to the identity of culture. He writes “Any real understanding of ourselves and our existing cultures calls for an attempt to understand colonialism.” Pg10. This explains that to truely understand a culture and ourselves we must take a valid note of the historical context. Colonialism had the ability to manipulate how a culture saw their world. It allowed the introduction of change to begin, Hau’ofa writes “South Seas, which became virtually synonymous with Paradise, a false concept that we have not successfully shed because it is used to promote the hospitality industry.”Hau’ofa, Pg5. Colonialism shaped shifted  the identity of the Islands to appeal for the tourists rather than the people of the land. With the world we now live in, going back to a world before Colonialism influences is near impossible, the focus should be centred around living in the present. “Our quest should not be for a revival of our past cultures but for the creation of new cultures which are free of the taint of colonialism and based firmly on our own pasts.” This resembles the idea that we have the ability to shape our future, to develop our world. We can’t change the past, we can only take what we have learnt and produce a better future. “we must not consent to our own abasement” Wendt, Albert. Pg 13. Allowing a thing or someone to bring us down, to make us feel and to be seen as lower. To allow such hypocrisy to control who we are shatters our identity and culture. We must not let others, the world, even ourselves bring us lower.



Lee, Yona. Specific Objects, welded sculptural. Blue Oyster Art Project Space. July 2014.

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Gimblett, Max. Wheel of life. Pencil, ink, 100% cotton handmade watercolour paper. 2015

Hauofa, Epeli. “The ocean in us.” The contemporary Pacific. University of Hawaii Press. 1998

Wendt, Albert. “Towards a new Oceania”. in Sharrad, Paul ed. Readings in Pacific Literature. New literatures Research Centre University of Wollongong, 1993.

Lee, Yona. Specific Objects, welded sculptural. Blue Oyster Art Project Space. July 2014.

Paterson, Reuben. Whakapapa: Get Down Upon Your Knees. Glitter and Paint. Tauranga Art Gallery, Toi.

Gimblett, Max. Wheel of life. Pencil, ink, 100% cotton handmade watercolour paper. 2015

Final Blog: Hinehihi

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History helps us remember, it keeps relationships that were formed hundreds of years ago alive. History is an important understand of the old world that therefor helps us understand the new world. The story of Hinemihi is powerful, she represents the unity that Maori and Europeans hold together. When Hinemihi was built in the 1880’s, she was made for the purpose of being a meeting house and a place of cultural entertainment for victorian tourists. “Wharekaniwha named her Hinemihi o te Ao Tawhito, or Hinimihi of the old world, emphasising the sense of a ‘new world’ emerging from the old” Engels-Schwarzpaul and Wikitera. Pg 2. This represents the open minds that Maori had by making Hinemihi to be a symbol of the changing world. Even in her carvings there is a sense of adaption to the new world “Hinimihi’s carvings represent significant ancestral genealogies. They also show signs of Western influence and changes in the economic environment: the ancestors wear bowler hats and victorian shoes.”Engels-Schwarzpaul and Wikitera. Pg 2. This reinforces the social context of Hinemihi, she was made to be approachable by Europeans, instead of intimidating visitors. By allowing Western Culture to be apart of Hinemihi herself it allows a physical bond to be created between the cultures. Therefore the transformation of the new world from the old, created a relationship that would bring new knowledge to both cultures, which results in being a historical value. The action of building Hinemihi represents Kaupapa Maori, she was build for the creation of knowledge. “Kaupapa Maori in this setting is the political motion to allow Maori knowledge, culture and experience to find a voice” Te Ahukaramū Charles Royal. Pg31. This represents Maori exhibiting their culture to the new world to kept it alive. Therefore reminding people of the old world. This is important because of the contemporary experiences Maori had to face such as colonisation. When Hinemihi was first bought to England she was simply a remembrance of paradise, and her function changed often while in the care of the Onslow family. In some ways you could say she was objectified, at one point she was being used for the purpose of storing outdoor furniture. “Our inability to analyse these buildings as architectural ‘objects’ does not preclude their inclusion as actors or artifacts in the ‘narrative’ of Maori nationalism.” D, Brown. Pg2. This represents that Hinemihi shouldn’t be used as an object of western function. She is a narration of Maori culture, a voice and an ancestor. To call her an object and treat her like one takes away from her identity. This is significant because it also stops Maori culture from being vocalised. “Hinemihi needs her descendants and their visitors in order to interact as a personal being, an ancestor and a host” Graham, Harvey. Pg. 110. Without people protecting her identity she will become forgotten. Hinemihi identity was saved and kept present in tribal memory by Ngati Ranana (Maori community in London.) and her presence in England allows Maori culture and performance to have a voice. In conclusion by understanding Hinemihi and her history it teaches us a lot about the significance of culture and relationships that are bonded through new knowledge. We can understand the significance of art and design by looking at how it’s adapted for the new world, while still representing the old. Overall Hinemihi is a significant symbol of the past, the present and the future.



Engels-Schwarzpaul, Chr and Wiktera, Keri-Anne. Take me away…In search of original dwelling. Interstices, a Journal of Architecture and Related Arts. Volume 10.

Brown, Deidre, Nga Paremata Maori: The Architecture of Maori Nationalism. Published online: 06 Jul 2012. 

Te Ahukaramū Charles Royal, New Zealand Journal of Educational Studies. Politics and Knowledge: Kaupapa Maori and Mantaranga Maori  Vol 47, No.2, 2012 

Harvey, Graham. Materiality and Study of Religion: Art work a Relational Rather than a Representational of Art and Buildings. Editors Hutchings, Tim, Mckenzie Joanne. Publisher Routledge 2017. 

Blog 5: Response to “Take me away . . . In search of original dwelling”

Standing out from the whole reading this quote; “An object which has been lost cannot…be remembered” Pg 10 . It Really digs deep about the message that Engles-Swartzpual and Wikitera are conveying. For example Hinemihi was taken from the land of New Zealand when it was sold to Lord Onslow. Even despite her moving across the other side of the world the identity of Hinemihi has still been able to grow and connect people together. She is not lost, in fact Hinemihi symbolises the connection between European and Maori culture that was formed over 127 years ago. The texts main aim is to highlight the importance of these relationships, by having cultural identities from Maori or Samoan overseas, it allows relationships to grow between the nations.


Engels-Schwarzpaul, Chr and Wiktera, Keri-Anne. Take me away…In search of original dwelling. Interstices, a Journal of Architecture and Related Arts. Volume 10.


Blog: 4 Representation of Maori through European Artists in New Zealand

WALTER WRIGHT 1866-1933 THE BURNING OF THE ‘ BOYD ‘ IN WHANGAROA HARBOUR Oil on canvas 42 x 62 Signed & dated W. Wright ’08

When first looking at this painting the first thing the viewer will notice is the burning flames that engulf the European ship. The eye travels down the canvas to where the ship meets the water. Completely surrounded by Maori canoes, this visually represents a conflict, and that Maori have full control as there is no European representation. The absence of Europeans also suggests that they have been killed. Walter Wright has painted this picture that shows Maori as savages, there is no hidden clue to why Maori have attacked this ship and there are no European survivors. The reason of the attack of the Boyd in the first place was to seek revenge as the local Chiefs son was whipped during the Boyd’s journey, Author unknown Pg: 16. Wrights is controlling the story, only representing the ‘barbaric’ side of the Maori’s and not the Europeans. “Europeans were taking over aspects of the culture and history of the people whom they had supplanted.” Bell, Leonard. Pg 144. This explains to us that the Europeans hand picked the history and the culture of the Maori’s that they believed they should represent to society to explain the past. Often enough the painting falsely represented actual story. In this case Wright hasn’t depicted that this Maori Tribe actually tricked the Europeans onto entering the ship by wearing sailor uniforms that they took from the crew they had killed earlier that day. The Tribe would of been smart enough not to arrive to the ship in Canoes or wearing traditional Maori clothing because the Europeans would have seen their attack coming from a mile away.



Bell, Leonard. The representation of the Maori by European Artists in New Zealand, ca. Collage of Art association.

Wright, Walter. The Burning of the ‘Boyd in Whangaroa Harbour. 1908. Oil on canvas. Auckland city Gallery. A Colonial view, paintings of early New Zealand. Auckland City Gallery, 1958. Pg17.

Author unknown, A Colonial View paintings of early New Zealand. Auckland city gallery 1958.




These past 4 weeks have really opened my eyes to Maori culture. Despite growing up in New Zealand I have never been taught such a deep knowledge of Maori culture and history. In the early weeks of CCC, learning about the significance of the different aspect of a Marea I discovered this is very interesting to me as I myself have visited a Marea. Despite this I was never fully educated on the importance of a Marea to Maori culture in the western education system. After learning and discovering how enriching Maori culture is, I can look back at the memories from visiting the Marea and appreciate it so much more.