A Whakapapa of Tradition: One Hundred Years of NgaTi Porou Carving, 1830-1930
From the emergence of the chapel and the wharenui in the nineteenth century to the rejuvenation of carving by Apirana Ngata in the 1920s, Maori carving went through a rapid evolution from 1830 to 1930. Focusing on thirty meeting houses, Ngarino Ellis tells the story of Ngati Poro... read full description below.
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Maori carving went through a rapid evolution from 1830 to 1930. Beginning around 1830, three dominant art traditions - war canoes, decorated storehouses and chiefly houses - declined and were replaced by whare karakia (churches), whare whakairo (decorated meeting houses) and wharekai (dining halls). In A Whakapapa of Tradition, Ngarino Ellis examines how and why that fundamental transformation took place by exploring the Iwirakau school of carving - an ancestor who lived in the Waiapu Valley around 1700, Iwirakau is credited for reinvigorating carving on the East Coast. The six major carvers of his school went on to create more than thirty important meeting houses and other structures, which Ngarino Ellis explores to tell this story of Ngati Porou carving and a profound transformation in Maori art. A Whakapapa of Tradition also attempts to make sense of Maori art history, exploring what makes a tradition in Maori art; how traditions begin and, conversely, how and why they cease. Beautifully illustrated with new photography by Natalie Robertson, and drawing on the work of key scholars to make a new synthetic whole, A Whakapapa of Tradition will be a landmark volume in the history of writing about Maori art.
Awards, Reviews & Star Ratings
Long-listed for Ockham New Zealand Book Awards - Illustrated Non-Fiction 2017
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Ngarino Ellis (Ng?puhi, Ng?ti Porou) is a lecturer in the Department of Art History at the University of Auckland, New Zealand. She is the co-editor with Deidre Brown of Te Puna: M?ori Art from Northland (Reed, 2007), as well as the author of a number of scholarly articles. Her prime research focus is Maori art history, and she has also lectured on art crime, including theft, illicit antiquities, looting, forgery and vandalism. In 2012 she was appointed co-ordinator for the Museums and Cultural Heritage Programme in the Faculty of Arts. Ellis is a co-investigator (with Jonathan Mane-Wheoki and Deidre Brown) on the three-year Marsden Fund project 'Toi Te Mana: A History of Indigenous Art in Aotearoa New Zealand'. A Whakapapa of Tradition is based on her 2012 PhD thesis. Natalie Robertson (Ng?ti Porou, Clann Dhonnchaidh) is a photographic artist and senior lecturer at AUT University, New Zealand. Robertson has an MFA from the University of Auckland, New Zealand and is enrolled in the PhD programme at Massey University, New Zealand researching photography in Maori contexts. She has exhibited extensively in public institutions throughout New Zealand and internationally.