News | 14 June 2022
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Hā: Rest as resistance

Hā, Toi Pōneke Gallery’s special Matariki exhibition, features new works by twelve wāhine Māori artists.

Woman lying on a mattress.
Artist Kelly Jarvis.

They are Jamie Berry, Lanae Cable, Tegan Hautapu, Kelly Jarvis, Emma Kitson, Gina Matchitt, Renee Paku, Te Kahureremoa Taumata, Rongomaiaia Te Whaiti, Vanessa Wairata Edwards, Kezia Whakamoe, and Tessa Williams.

Running until 1 July 2022, Hā audiences are invited to join the artists and rest together in the gallery during Matariki. The works acknowledge how our tīpuna would have spent this time.  

The artists' concept of rest evolved during the Covid-19 lockdowns, a time when many people were forced to stop, stay in haumaru (safety), and reflect.  
Textile artworks will cover a collection of mattresses that can be laid upon. A unique soundscape and interactive lightwork will surround the floor-based artworks, creating a calm, sensory environment within the busy centre of Pōneke.  

Artist Kelly Jarvis’ (Te Aitanga a Hauiti) vibrant work inspires people to grow reciprocal, healing relationships with nature, and to be active in the nurturing and protection of te taiao and of each other.

“Get comfortable and tune in to the mauri and rongoā of the ngahere,” Kelly says.

Woman lying on a mattress, staring up at the ceiling.
Artist Vanessa Wairata Edwards.

Artist Vanessa Wairata Edwards (Ngati Tuwharetoa Whakatohea) says people are welcome to lay on her work. 

“My work is designed so that your feet are at the wall, and you look up at the extending images and consider and reflect what they are and what they represent and how they transcend into a higher space.

“It has become apparent to me that ‘rest as resistance’ is seeking peace in yourself and in your knowing, finding strength in your abilities and offerings. May this space offer a place of contemplation and enlightenment for you.”

Come to this space with your whānau to experience a moment of calm, togetherness, and reflection, while resting on this unique artwork. People are asked to please take off their shoes.
Four workshops will be held for charity groups chosen by the artist for their importance in supporting their communities. The workshops will rangahau (investigate) the concept of rest during Matariki providing the opportunity to stop, rest, reflect and share.  
Visit the Hā page for exhibition and artists’ details.   
Toi Pōneke Arts Centre is where our creative capital's arts communities interact, produce, innovate, teach, and exhibit. Toi Pōneke Gallery exhibits contemporary work by solo artists, groups, and curators – emerging and established – many of whom go on to exhibit nationwide. 

Toi Pōneke Gallery is open 10am–8pm weekdays, 10am–4pm weekends, and closed on public holidays. Free entry.

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