Natalie Robertson:
Te Ahikāroa / Home Fires Burning

Sep 30 – Dec 12, 2014

The C. N. Gorman Museum extends a warm welcome to Natalie Robertson. We are honored to host her solo exhibition, Te Ahikāroa: Home Fires Burning.

When one sees the word ‘photographer’, the image brought to mind is often of one person, one camera, one perspective, travel and the exotic. Of course, this refers to a ‘western’ description which is light years away from the realities of Indigenous photographers who are dedicated to maintaining images of family, community and visual translations of Indigenous philosophies. As a photographer and writer, Robertson resolutely cultivates the visual dialogue of cultural intersections.

The exhibition is created from two recent photographic series. From the Mouth of the Port to the Beak of the River (2014), considers fishing and seafood gathering alongside the use and self-determination of indigenous land and knowledge in the face of ecological threats to traditional food sources and sacred sites.

The Headlands Await Your Coming (2010-2013), is rooted in Ahi kā, a cornerstore principle of land rights. This body of work approaches marae (communal and sacred place that serves cultural and social purposes) and surrounding tribal lands as a lived space in which intergenerational use keeps the fires burning.

The 32-page exhibition catalogue includes an essay by Robertson, exploring her perspectives at length, and illustrated with 21 images.


Artist Talk & Reception: Oct 14 from 4-6pm

top: Waiapu Kahawai, 2014
middle: Rock fishing, Port Awanui (2 of 4), detail, 2014
bottom: Boiled pig head, Te Rimu, Tikapa, 2012/2013