Over the next year or more I see myself focussing mainly on contemporary Maori portraiture. Alongside that, I will likely continue to paint waka, simple mystical landscapes and Maori carving.
Purpose of Contemporary Maori Oil Portrait Series: The purpose of this series is to explore the modern meaning of 'heritage' for an indigenous culture living in a post-colonial society. Being Ngati Porou myself, I will redirect the ‘gaze’ of indigenous portraiture inwards. No longer will the colonial portrayal of romanticised, ancient ‘specimens’ prevail. The medium of oil on canvas references the 19th and early 20th century portraiture of Lindauer and Goldie – Western colonial artists who were recording the ‘vanishing race’ of Maori. I will use their medium to show Maori as being a very much living and evolving people, inhabiting real and current time and space.