Māori Heritage Park

Our Places | Māori Heritage Park

What is a Māori Heritage Park?
Why do we need to “Get Creative” with a Māori Heritage Park?
How could we “Get Creative” with a Māori Heritage Park?
Who do we need to “Get Creative” with a Māori Heritage Park?
Māori Heritage Park Links

What is a Māori Heritage Park?

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Christchurch has Ferrymead Heritage Park, but we don’t have a Heritage Park to celebrate our Māori history/heritage, showcasing Māori Design and Arts & Crafts.
– Similar design to Creators Early Childhood Centre Hamilton.
– New Road (30kph) with wide footpaths, from Retreat Road to Morris Street.
– Walking through native trees/plants on either side of the road, with the Pa at the end of the road.
– Entrance to Pa off Morris Street, includes: Marae, Meeting House, Exhibition Spaces, Performance Spaces.
– Learning Spaces: Focus on Māori Architecture & Design, Hands on Arts & Crafts classes

Why do we need to “Get Creative” with a Māori Heritage Park?
“Take a moment to think about a crucial part of who you are. For example, I am Scottish, and that is a very important part of me. Now think about whether other people accept that part of you. Perhaps you feel a disconnection between how much you accept yourself and how much others seem to accept you. If you feel like others don’t accept you for that part of your identity, this could impact on your mental health. As human beings, we have a natural desire to be accepted and to belong.”

“All Voices: The indigenous voice in Christchurch’s rebuild ‘we are not left out anymore’: with Riki Manuel & Fayne Robinson
In 1990, Riki Manuel was told to carve a “little rock” that would represent the coming of Maori to Christchurch in Victoria Square. Soaring above it, would be a statutes of Captain Cook and Queen Victoria.
He said ‘nah’ and told them it should be an ‘equivalent’ size. He carved a six-foot poupou instead.
That was testing the boundaries of the city’s tolerance for visible mana whenua narratives.”

How could we “Get Creative” with a Māori Heritage Park?
“With a wealth of traditional motifs and a variety of landscapes and cultural influences from which to draw inspiration, it is no surprise that New Zealand is a very creative place.
Some of the biggest inspirations for New Zealand artists are (unsurprisingly) the country’s natural assets and stunning landscapes. While painters capture the magnificent scenery, others use natural materials such as Harakeke (flax), Pohutukawa and fern leaf in their works. This is not a new development; Māori settlers developed powerful motifs and artistic forms utilising natural resources from their earliest days in New Zealand, carving bone, stone, wood and shell, and weaving native fibres.
In recent years, contemporary artists have woven a unique blend of histories and cultures, themes and styles together in their work, reflecting the diversity of New Zealand society. It is now common to see traditional Māori arts using contemporary mediums, and distinct Māori, Asian and Pacific Island influences can clearly be seen in other artworks. This unique New Zealand blend reaches across all genres. Ancient Māori performance arts, for example, employ modern interpretations, while Kiwi musicians mix popular international styles with traditional Pacific influences, and New Zealand-themed movies are shown at international film festivals.
Today, painters such as Shane Cotton, who incorporates Māori themes in his work to represent shared Māori and Pakeha experiences and significant events in New Zealand history, are celebrated, and they all find a place in New Zealand’s galleries.
A great way for visitors to experience arts and crafts is by visiting a workshop. Many studios offer a hands-on approach, giving visitors the opportunity to try weaving (at Te Puia in Rotorua, for example) or carving; Hokitika on the West Coast is especially renowned for jade carving workshops.”

When I was doing research for https://www.10shirleyroad.org.nz/, I was looking for ‘modern Māori building design’ and found inspiring images from ‘Creators Early Childhood Centre, Hamilton’.
“We have of course adopted a playful twist, using randomly arranged windows, whilst the elevation facing the trees takes its cues from traditional Māori Wharenui (meeting houses), again referencing the cultural context.”
I love how they incorporated traditional Māori Wharenui (meeting houses), made out of natural materials, that remind me of treehouses, in a creative dramatic play/storytelling playground environment.

Who do we need to “Get Creative” with a Māori Heritage Park?
“Māori artists have increased in number and influence since the 1970s, when Ngā Puna Waihanga (the Association of Māori Arts and Writers) began. Long-established contemporary artists such as Ralph Hotere, Para Matchitt and Robyn Kahukiwa have been joined by new talent such as Michael Parekowhai and Shane Cotton. A landmark event was the Te Māori exhibition of 1984 which took traditional Māori art to the world and also opened the eyes of New Zealanders. Traditional and contemporary Māori art is fostered by Toi Māori Aotearoa, an artists’ network, and the integrity of Māori arts and crafts is protected by toi iho, the ‘Māori-made’ trademark.”

“Tower Junction redevelopment complete:
Ngāi Tahu Property have worked closely with Matapopore, a charitable trust incepted after the quakes to ensure mana whenua values and the voice of Ngāi Tūāhuriri and Ngāi Tahu are included in the rebuild.
Kennedy says this relationship has resulted in markers of Ngāi Tahu culture being included in the development. The work of Fayne Robinson, a Ngāi Tahu master carver, and other Māori artists have been incorporated on site.
‘These examples of Toi Māori (Māori art) reflect the stories of mana whenua from this area of Canterbury and acknowledge its Māori history. As a tribally-owned business, it’s important for us to remember this,’ Kennedy says.”

“Helping rangatahi get into the ‘digi’ creative space:
Hori Mataki, creative lead for Ariki Creative and member of Te Ao Hangarau, is paving the way for rangatahi with an interest for digital technologies. In his words, Te Ao Hangarau is ‘setting up the change for rangatahi to build off our shoulders to get into the digi space’.
Te Ao Hangarau is a collective of young Māori working in digital creative spaces, including videography and photography, graphic and web design, animation, communication and software development.
‘We believe in sharing our skills with the community, using digital technology to help whānau whānaui and rangatahi, as well as leaving a legacy for other aspiring Māori digital creatives to follow should they wish to pursue a career in the digital creative industry,’ says Hori.
The overarching vision for Te Ao Hangarau is to host rangatahi at digi-wānanga, funnel those whose interest is ignited into tertiary education pathways, provide internship opportunities for them to grow experience and leverage existing relationships to assist these rangatahi into gainful employment in the digital creative industry.”

Māori Heritage Park Links
Matapopore Urban Design Guide: Kia Atawhai Ki Te Iwi: Caring For The People
Maatakiwi Wakefield: Matuku Takotako: Sumner Centre
Auckland Design Manual: Maori Design
Don Hitchcock: Don’s Maps: Maori Pa
World famous in New Zealand: Tawhiti Museum, Hawera