This solo exhibition brings to the fore local artist Tawhai Rickard, supreme award winner 2018 Miles Art Awards at Tauranga Art Gallery, and inaugural winner of the 2016 Te Ha Art Awards in Gisborne, Tairawhiti.
The Misadventures of Te Kuri examines two Maori superheroes derived from American pop culture. Te Kuri and Pipiwharauroa navigate their way throughout the historical and contemporary cultural landscapes of Aotearoa New Zealand, often in the face of adversity and antagonism. Their journey frequently transcends time through the injection of notable characters, events, vernacular, and symbolism. Nau mai haere mai, welcome to the lair of Te Kuri.
Tawhai Rickard, a self-employed visual artist, was born in Tūranganui-a-Kiwa, Gisborne, New Zealand in 1968, of Ngati Porou descent. He currently lives and works in Tauranga.
Tawhai Rickard explains to Lynn Freeman, Standing Room Only, RNZ, how he came to combine American pop culture and Māoridom here.
Image credit: Tawhai Rickard, Te Kuri Hybrid Mobile, 2021. Courtesy of Tawhai Rickard and PAULNACHE. Photographed by Thomas Teutenberg.