Te Maiea, 2020,
Digital animation, 4:30 loop
Inaugural exhibition projected onto the Aotea Centre Wrap, Auckland, New Zealand, 1 – 28 February, 2020.
Reuben Paterson’s new animation observes the whakapapa of Hine Maheri, the personification of sparkling fine grained sandstone, through the union and incarnations of our cliffs, rocks, stones and springs produced from Tāne Mahuta, the god of the forest and his (particular) union with Hine-tū-pari-maunga, the personification of mountains and cliffs.
As an artist whose practise is inspired by enriching our connection and experiencing of coruscation and of glitter as a man made material, those sudden shimmers and flashes of light are sourced back to nature, and in this instance to the sandstone and iron rich sands of Aotearoa where as a young boy, Reuben Paterson was raised on the sparkling black basalt sand on Piha Beach.
We depend on these natural resources and we influence them directly through a reciprocal relationship of manaaki whenua (caring for the land) and manaaki tangata (caring for people). Through a Māori lens the term ecosystem explains the interwoven concepts of whakapapa, mana and kaitiakitanga and possession of the spiritual qualities of tapu, mauri, and wairua as a dynamic interaction of a community with their environment – where the world is a vast family, and humans are children of the earth and sky, and cousins to all living things, inclusive of all people.