27 Jul 2022
With additional support from the Government recently confirmed for this financial year, Creative New Zealand will be able to continue working with mātanga (expert knowledge holders) and pūkenga (specialists) around the country to protect and retain mātauranga toi – artform knowledge and tikanga integral to ngā toi Māori.
In 2020 the very real danger COVID-19 posed to senior knowledge holders was identified. To protect the potential loss of mātauranga Māori related to our arts, culture and heritage Manatū Taonga, the Ministry for Culture and Heritage, worked collectively with Creative New Zealand, Te Papa Tongarewa, Te Matatini, Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision and Heritage New Zealand Pouhere Taonga to develop the $20 million Mātauranga Māori Te Awe Kōtuku programme.
Creative New Zealand initially received $2.8 million dollars to set-up immediate support to protect mātauranga toi across the country.
Hāniko Te Kurapa, Creative New Zealand’s Senior Manager, Te Kaupapa o Toi Aotearoa, says we must keep up this momentum.
“Over the past two years Creative New Zealand has supported 35 initiatives led by Māori artists and practitioners to protect, cultivate and retain mātauranga Māori related to heritage ngā toi Māori of marae, hapū, iwi, whakapapa-based rōpū and mātāwaka under the Toi Ake – Mātauranga Māori Te Awe Kōtuku Fund,” he says.
Yesterday’s Government announcement of an additional $1 million for Creative New Zealand during 2022/2023 means work underway will continue to support initiatives around the country and critically endangered artforms tārai waka (waka building) and taonga pūoro (Māori musical instruments).
Hāniko continues, “Our partners such as Haumanu Collective have delivered a large programme of work to sustain knowledge of taonga pūoro composition, performance, the making of Māori musical instruments and their use in traditional healing. Te Kīato and the collective of tārai waka leaders have also delivered fantastic programmes such as Tangata Tai to grow the numbers of experienced waka builders and Tangata Uta to encourage greater whānau and tamariki engagement with waka through active participation, learning how to build and paddle waka alongside other skills such as water safety.”
Creative New Zealand will allocate the funds with $500,000 supporting projects under the Toi Ake – Mātauranga Māori Te Awe Kōtuku Fund (opening 22 August 2022) and the remainder supporting programmes of work for taonga pūoro and tārai waka in 2022/2023.
“We’re thrilled to see the fruits of this significant work led by Māori artists and practitioners taking place due to Mātauranga Māori Te Awe Kōtuku investment. These collectives are building much needed Māori arts infrastructure to support current and future practitioners and ensure mātauranga is restored and healthy for future generations,” says Hāniko.
The valuable contribution made towards the preservation of endangered Māori artforms during the peak of the COVID-19 pandemic has started laying the foundations for ongoing protection of these precious artforms.
For further information on initiatives supported under the Toi Ake – Mātauranga Māori Te Awe Kōtuku programme see https://www.creativenz.govt.nz/News-and-blog/2022/06/15/02/25/21/Protecting-cultivating-and-retaining-precious-matauranga-toi
Further information on projects completed under the broader Creative New Zealand Mātauranga Māori Te Awe Kōtuku programme will be available in September 2022.