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Exhibition of contemporary Maori art inspires Maori creative Melodownz

Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media

Auckland Art Gallery has brought together 70 years of Māori creativity and storytelling into one powerful exhibition that is Toi Tū Toi Ora: Contemporary Māori Art.

Featuring over 300 artworks by 111 Māori artists, Toi Tū Toi Ora: Contemporary Māori Art is open until May 9th and is free to the public.

The game-changing exhibition celebrates Māori creativity through the generations, and highlights the common themes, narratives and ideas that Māori artists have explored and expressed in their creative outlet.

With a vast range of contemporary Māori art, including painting, sculpture, printmaking, clay-making, jewellery and body adornment, photography, digital media, film and installation art, the exhibition is an experience that everyone can enjoy and within which many find meaning.

Local Māori artist/rapper/creative, Melodownz, was blown away by the exhibition and says, ‘It made me really proud and empowered to know that a whole art gallery is full of Māori artists… I think that’s something that we need more often in this society, more indigenous artwork in that kind of environment.’

Inspired by his experience at Toi TÅ« Toi Ora: Contemporary Māori Art, Melodownz has created a spoken-word piece to represent his experience of being a young Māori creative in today’s world and what that means to him. Here is a link to his spoken word piece.

He speaks of the impact of colonisation, the way he feels in today’s society and how he draws on his Māori culture to empower him in his creativity.

As an intergenerational exhibition that explores the last 70 years of Māori art, Toi TÅ« Toi Ora: Contemporary Māori Art also creates an opportunity to look forward. It’s inspiring today’s generation of creatives, like Melodownz, to take charge of their stories and celebrate and embrace their culture through creativity.

Exhibition details:

Toi Tū Toi Ora: Contemporary Māori Art


Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki

Corner Kitchener and Wellesley Streets

Auckland, New Zealand


FREE for New Zealand residents and Gallery Members

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