Covered in soil

These works are my interpretation of pūrākau, where Haumia-tiketike along with his brother Rongo, fled to Papatūānuku, taking refuge with their mother to escape the anger of their brother Tāwhiri-mātea. Both covered themselves with her soil, and remained hidden from their enraged brother.

As a mother, I know all too well about the constant sibling wars we must not take sides on, but, that we are always the place of refuge for. So, I made these works through a mothers lens. I also imagined what blurry outlines you may see if completely covered in soil.

These images are shot in camera, not digitally created . While I was shooting this series next to my local river, a man approached me and launched into a racist rant against Māori which led to me making a police report and now feeling unsafe in my own community. This depiction, of being covered and hidden in the safe embrace of a mothers arms, is something I now feel not only as a mother, but, am also reminded I sometimes need myself when dealing with being indigenous growing up in a racist country.

Shown at the Hihiaua Cultural Centre, Whangarei, for the Taku Ahi Exhibition
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