06 March – 04 July 2020


All images (+8)

Maree Sheehan: Ōtairongo
7 March – 4 July 2020
Artspace Aotearoa

Friday 6 March 6pm - 8pm
Ground Floor, 292 Karangahape Road,
Newton, Tamaki Makaurau Auckland

Tukua taku pīrere kia whakaparirau
Kia topa i runga i te hau e pupuhi mai nei
Mā ngā tūpuna hei arataki tana haere
I waenganui i te rangi e tū nei
Me te papa e takoto nei
Ki tēnā maunga, ki tēnā raorao
Ki tēnā nehenehe, ki tēnā kāinga
Ki reira ruirui atu ai i ngā kano i pau i a ia te kai
I mōmona ai tōna puku, i ora ai ia
Me kore noa e tupu mai he rākau hou
Hei kāinga taupua mō ngā manu o te wao
Tūturu whakamaua kia tīna
Haumi e, hui e
Tāiki e

Let my fledgling be equipped with wings
So that it may soar on the winds that blow here
May the ancestors guide it as it travels
Between the sky that stands above
And the earth that rests below
Visiting the mountains, the lowlands
The forests and the villages
Dispersing as it goes the seeds it fed on
That sustained it and kept it in good condition
In the hope that a new tree will grow
As a temporary home for the birds of the forest
Tūturu whakamaua kia tīna
Haumi e, hui e
Tāiki e

This karakia was written by Hēmi Kelly.
Ngāti Maniapoto, Ngāti Tahu-Ngāti Whāoa

Pushing the boundaries of contemporary Māori art, Artspace Aotearoa in association with the Auckland Arts Festival presents the debut solo exhibition Ōtairongo, by artist Maree Sheehan. In Ōtairongo, Sheehan seeks to interpret and represent the identity of wāhine Māori through audio-portraiture, experienced within the realm of Hineraukatauri. Ōtairongo will be the first exhibition to be presented in the new Artspace Aotearoa gallery on the ground floor of Karangahape Road.

Opening Friday 6 March, Ōtairongo presents portraits of three mana wahine Māori; Moana Maniapoto, Te Rita Papesch and Ramon Te Wake through the use of immersive binaural sound-capture technologies. These works are presented in darkness, elevating aural perception and approaching a renegotiation of how wāhine Māori might be interpreted and represented.

“Ōtairongo is a way of expressing immersion into what is heard and felt above, outside and within. It also embraces what reverberates in between, as the frequencies vibrate, resound, echo, ring and subtly shift along trajectories and continuums of awareness.”

  • Maree Sheehan

“Ōtairongo by Maree Sheehan presents an exciting opportunity to rethink and reconsider the scope of contemporary Māori art. The artist’s sonic portraiture project allows for new readings and understandings about representation that highlights the seen and unseen worlds of Māori knowledge in new ways.”

  • Nigel Borell

Artist Biography

Maree Sheehan
Ngāti Maniapoto, Waikato, Ngāti Tuwharetoa, Raukawa, Ngāti Tahu-Ngāti Whāoa

Maree Sheehan is a sound artist based in Tāmaki Makaurau. Her practice incorporates years of experience in the composition and research of sound portraiture that has lead to the creation of her debut solo exhibition Ōtairongo. Having recently completed a PhD, her study takes particular interest in a new form of audio portraiture that interprets and represents the identity of wāhine Māori. Sheehan is a widely regarded singer-songwriter, having released multiple albums with an established music career that began in the 1990s. Her music also appears in iconic films and television series such as Once Were Warriors, Broken English, and Shortland Street. Over the course of her music career, Sheehan has dedicated her time to teaching and mentoring, Sheehan was honoured for her services to youth music with the MAI Whangai award in the year 2000.

Ōtairongo was made possible with the support of Auckland University of Technology, Auckland Arts Festival, Auckland Regional Council, Creative New Zealand, and Sennheiser