Produced exclusively for Te Papa Store, this work by Robyn Kahukiwa continues her exploration of Māori culture.
One of Aotearoa’s pre-eminent female Māori painters, Kahukiwa joins a bespoke selection of other New Zealand artists in our range, aiming to bring Fine Art to your whare.
Kahukiwa’s rediscovery of her Māori heritage, on moving from Sydney to New Zealand in 1955, has formed the crux of her painting practice, which passionately articulates and affirms her identity as a Māori wahine.
Kahukiwa’s paintings investigate the diversity of urban Māori and Pacific communities, and often represent her personal search for cultural identity. Her mural-scale paintings are populated with ancestral figures, native birds, plants and trees, and their commentary relates to the realities and struggles of Māori.
One of the most well-known birds of Aotearoa, now extinct, the huia was regarded by Māori as tapu. Revered and known for its unique beauty of glossy black and striking broad band of white tipped feathers. The wearing of huia feathers was reserved for Māori chiefs and their whanau, and symbolized nobility, leadership and mana. The feathers from the tail of the huia were particularly prized and were worn in the hair or around the neck by both Māori men and women of high rank, as featured in the silk screen print “Huia” by Robyn Kahukiwa 2020, which portrays a Wahine Māori wearing the distinct white tipped feather in her hair as the huia bird flies above her. Kahukiwa was inspired to create this image to express Māori traditions.
Print comes unframed, only available framed in-store
Dimensions: 32 x 45cm