After the difficult year we’ve experienced in Aotearoa New Zealand the new series of paintings by Hiria Anderson (Rereahu, Ngāti Maniapoto, Ngāti Apakura) comes as a relief.
The view from a plane, a scene in the pub, a Wellington street, a basket of laundry – images like these are in our collective visual memory and remind us, gently, that it’s everyday scenes and overlooked objects that make up the greatest part of our lives.
Anderson’s paintings reinforce the fact that ordinariness can be reassuring during times of great change.
And they remind us that we’re passengers on the same waka, making the same journey, together.
Hiria Anderson describes one of the principles governing Te Ao Māori as being the impulse to work together for the common good of everyone and everything.
“Collective Aspirations is a term used within communities who are focussed on recovery and moving forward; communities who want to rebuild together in a post-Covid era. We pay attention to elements of nature, both the seen and the unseen, to help restore, keep order and maintain life’s balance.
Our principles are guided by ngā uara (values) including Kotahitanga (unity), Manaakitanga (caring for each other), Aroha (love), Tika (what’s right) and Pono (truth). It is the way we have traditionally functioned throughout our existence in order to survive.
I am interested in what ngā uara look like today, in 2022, as I observe my life through a contemporary lens. I hope my paintings are helpful.”
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