16 Mar 2022
Tiwha tiwha te pō, Tiwha tiwha te ao. He whare i mahue kau e. He whare i mahue kau e. Ka whatinga ake te kura o te marama. Ka pahuka mai te moana i ngā tai e ngunguru nei.
Tēnei ko te toka kia tātou, kua hinga rātou kua hinga. Kua takoto i te ringa kaha o Aitua. Haere rā e te morehu Kuia e Marina te mana o ngā tipuna. Te Kuru o te marama, ka taupoki te waka ki raro e, ka taupoki te waka ki raro e.
Kua mahue mai rā tātou ki kōnei, haku ai mōu e te whaea. He kanohi hōmiromiro, he kaitiaki nō tōna pātaka iringa kōrero, kua kore. He kuia tārai kōrero me ōna hītori, kua riro. Kāti rā, ‘He kokonga whare e kitea, he kokonga ngākau e kore e kitea’.
It is with sadness that Creative New Zealand acknowledges the passing of Marina Sciascia.
Marina served on Te Waka Toi (Māori Arts Board) of Creative New Zealand from 2005 – 2011 and throughout the arts sector as an administrator, events manager, traditional Māori performance artist with nationally recognised kapa haka teams, including her beloved Tamatea Arikinui, and later in life authored history books particularly on her home of Porangahau.
Marina was also the sister of recognised Māori arts knowledge holder, Piri Sciascia.
Creative New Zealand Chief Executive Stephen Wainwright pays tribute to Marina:
Marina succeeded Garry Nicholas as the Māori arts adviser when Garry left to form Toi Māori with Eric Tamepo in 1995. It was terrific that Marina returned to us in the Old Public Trust Building as a board member to serve from 2005 up until the 2014 Act that disestablished Te Waka Toi.
We would double team on work relating to Māori organisations; Marina valued my technical skills and expertise and I valued hers. Some of the work was challenging, but I remember fondly Marina’s practical wisdom and conviction that stuff goes wrong, and you can’t undo that, but you can – with effort and focus – make things right. Marina had a gift for earning trust and confidence while at the same time being a straight talker with a great sense of humour.
Perhaps in part because of her brother Piri who worked for the QE 11 Arts Council, Marina felt very comfortable with us. She was a champion for Ngā Toi Māori and led important work at the New Zealand Festival for the Arts with Carla Van Zon.
It would have been at Piri’s tangihanga in Porangahau that we last had a good chat with Marina. She was in good form then, before she became crook. She was proud of the progress of her niece and nephew (Ana and Tumarangai) in their careers. Marina loved kapa haka and always spoke fondly of the village (Porangahau), next to the moana in the heart of her Kahungunu whenua.
The Creative New Zealand whānau sends our condolences to Marina’s loved ones.
Moe mai rā e te hoa.