This Matariki a constellation of Aotearoa’s artists will be creating a multimedia, cinematic experience on water.
Mana Moana is a collaboration between musicians, artists, writers and choreographers to produce a series of five, short art films fusing poetry, dance, song, painting, photography and animation.
Instead of projecting on a traditional film screen, Mana Moana explores its themes of ocean, migration and diaspora on a screen of projected water.
The water screen – a feat of engineering – propels millions of water drops that fall and catch the light, creating a screen that gives the illusion of images appearing from the darkness and floating on water.
Running for six nights at Whairepo Lagoon on Wellington’s waterfront, Mana Moana is produced by Storybox with curators Michael Bridgman and Rachael Rakena. Rakena, a well-known artist whose own work frequently uses water, says having the films screen in this way affirms the project’s kaupapa.
“These films explore indigenous relationships and identities with the ocean. As we grapple with climate change, our futures will be linked in new ways. Water is connective tissue – the seas connect us all between the islands of the Pacific – and Mana Moana is literally projecting its stories on water.”
“In the face of our climate emergency this work is timely and relevant”. Says Rakena.
Rakena paired artists from different disciplines together, to cross-pollinate and create wholly new works. Visual artist Robyn Kahukiwa’s paintings are animated and partnered with text by Tina Ngata, Dayle Takitimu and Michelle Ngamoki; Karlo Mila’s poetry is complemented by Michael Bridgman’s animated patterns; Johnson Witehira’s contribution makes waves across three of the projects; Louise Potiki Bryant has worked with dancer Rosie Tapsell with music by longtime partner, Paddy Free; and Warren Maxwell’s music links the films, threading its way through the sequence.
Rakena says the outdoor experience audiences will have is going to be “a bit of magic”.
Mana Moana runs nightly from the 28th of June to the 3rd of July from 6-9pm at Wellington Harbour’s lagoon and is part of Wellington City Council’s Matariki ki Pōneke 2019.
Notes to editor:
Describing the concept of authority over lakes and parts of the sea, Mana Moana is a contemporary term that acknowledges the relationships between people from a specific place through whakapapa and their knowledge of that place.
Dates and times: 28th June – 3rd July 6pm – 9pm
30th June – 5.30pm – 6.30pm, 6.45pm – 9pm (Sky show night)
Film duration: 25 mins (loop starting on the half an hour)
Artists: Robyn Kahukiwa, Tina Ngata, Johnson Witehira, Rachael Rakena, Louise Potiki Bryant, Karlo Mila, Michael Bridgman, Dayle Takitimu, Michelle Ngamoki, Rosie Tapsell, Rio Hemopo-Hunuki, Paddy Free and Warren Maxwell.
-News from Mana Moana