Mataaho Collective

Formed 2012 |
Living and working in Aotearoa they are:Erena Baker (Te Atiawa ki Whakarongotai, Ngāti Toa Rangātira) Sarah Hudson (Ngāti Awa, Ngāi Tūhoe, Ngāti Pūkeko) Bridget Reweti (Ngāti Ranginui, Ngāi Te Rangi) Terri Te Tau (Rangitāne and Ngāti Kahungunu ki Wairarapa)

Mataaho Collective is a collaboration between four Māori women who each have individual lens-based practices. They regularly come together to produce large-scale fibre-based works, which are grounded in deep research, and refer to the contemporary realities of Māori people. For the 14th Gwangju Biennale, Mataaho Collective have explored the contemporary use of Māori weaving techniques through the utilitarian material of ratchet tie downs, which are used to secure and carry heavy loads over distances. The orange is a reference to the iron rich Parawhenuamea, the Māori embodiment of fresh water. Her body shifts and changes colour from the mountains to the sea and she carries ancient life in the form of orange biogenic iron that filters into soils, plants, and people. This hi-vis orange, used worldwide for safety vests, is an acknowledgement of the people who work with these materials every day. The title Tuakirikiri refers to the influential ancestor of gravel and small rocks. An ever-present element, Tuakirikiri reminds of the humble potential and power of community.

Mataaho Collective, Tuakirikiri 2023. Courtesy Mataaho Collective, Commissioned by the 14th Gwangju Biennale, Supported by Creative New Zealand. Installation view, 14th Gwangju Biennale (2023). Image courtesy Gwangju Biennale Foundation. Photo: glimworkers