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Māori art to fill the streets for summer

The country’s largest street poster company, Phantom Billstickers, is giving a summer treat to Kiwis by brightening up the city with art from the Māori Art Gallery. 

From December 2022, Phantom Billstickers is partnering with the gallery to showcase Aotearoa’s most accomplished contemporary artists. 

Some of the featured art includes Takuahiroa by Kaatarina Kerekere and Navigator by Rangi Kipa, showcasing the unique cultural stories of Māori to every passer-by.

“These stories can invoke a sense of curiosity or a sense of belonging and familiarity,” says Larissa McMillan of Wairau Māori Art Gallery. 

“This campaign says ‘we are proud and present, we are vibrant and intriguing, and we are here with you in your environment. Kia ora.’”

Read more: The future of art – digitising and use of AI

The Takuahiroa is a still, digital motion graphic that has incorporated elements of mōteatea (a lament) and motifs to highlight the loss of knowledge in her hapū and tribe. 

The piece encourages people to stay connected to their papakāinga and whānau. 

On the other hand, the Navigator was a centrepiece of Kipa’s 2008 solo exhibition in New York. 

Decorated with celestial maps, the piece looks into the Māori cosmological and ocean-faring histories, while also suggesting a complex pathway for Māori communities moving from past colonial grievances to a more positive future centred on well-being and growth.

CEO of Phantom Billstickers, Robin McDonnell says he is excited to be showcasing art over the summer via the company as a way to go back to their roots in the art sector. 

“We couldn’t be happier knowing we’re doing our bit to expose great work to a new audience,” says McDonnell. 

For those who would like to see more will be able to see it in Aotearoa’s first dedicated public Wairau Māori art gallery in Whangārei. 

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