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Music, arts and more at Pātaka for Matariki 2019

Matariki Anna Bailey

Pātaka Art + Museum will reverberate to the sights and sounds of Matariki in June and July as a host of art, music and community events are held to celebrate this landmark time of year.

From whānau days packed with arts and crafts activities and music performances, to the screening of a Kiwi film classic, an open mic night and detailed exhibition rundowns from a curator, there really is something for everybody.

Pātaka Director Reuben Friend said this Matariki festival, Pātaka was the perfect place to connect with both the arts and each other.

“Matariki is a time when we reach out to our community and provide as many activities and events as possible to help them celebrate and mark this key event in the Māori calendar.

“This Matariki we have a whole series of events and activities that will cater to all tastes, from art and film buffs and social and cultural butterflies, to children and families.”

A cornerstone of this year’s events is a unique exhibition, Iho, an in depth look at the many and varied ways Māori have traditionally worn their hair, examined through dramatic photography, short stories and prose and poetry.

The exhibition is currently on in the Bottle Creek Gallery and runs until 14 July.

Another key event is Keep it Short, a public programme of short stories, poems and responses to Matariki being shared on the winter solstice, 22 June, the shortest day of the year.

Music fans will be well catered for with a programme of performances from traditional choirs, amateur singers and musicians through to a Porirua roots band.

The Spine will play host to an Open Mic Night on 29 June, while the Wellington Regional Māori Choir and the Porirua Take Note Singers will combine for an epic Matariki concert at a Whānau Day on June 30.

The Whānau Day will also include a floor talk from art curator Gregory O’Brien, who co-curated the See what i can see photography exhibition, on currently at Pātaka, as well as an awesome puppet show from puppeteer Anna Bailey, titled Puppets in the Portrait Gallery.

Pātaka Curator Community Exhibitions Emma Kitson said a second Whānau Day on 6 July will welcome families into as many different art and gallery spaces as possible, all filled with Matariki-themed activities.

“We want to create a real buzz around Matariki, by using as many gallery and exhibition spaces as possible with informative, educational and most of all fun activities for all ages.

“We will be holding an art market alongside face painting and a printing workshop, and will have activities centred around our current exhibitions, while Porirua Roots band Waimusic will also be performing.”

A highlight of the day’s events will be a screening of the classic kiwi film Patu, from iconic director Merita Mita, which documents the massive protests against the 1982 Springbok tour of New Zealand.

The film also fits in with one of Pātaka’s major seasonal exhibitions, From the Shore, an artistic response to the work of renowned Māori film directors Merita Mita and Barry Barclay.

18 Jun 2019