Through the work The Hauntology of Inheritance, dancers and choreographers Suzanne Cowan and Rodney Bell explore ideas of family heritage, the history of colonisation in New Zealand and notions of partnership. The Byers Walkway carries the name of Cowan’s ancestors and marks their role as early settlers in the Piha area. Through traversing the Byers Walkway together, Bell and Cowan interrogate the legacy that Pakeha have inherited in the 21st century and pay respects to Te Kawerau a Maki as tangata whenua of the area.

As dancers, Rodney and Suzanne both have the lived experience of disability which gives them a unique perspective on navigating and choreographing space. They ask how we honour our own desire to access the forest and be an active part of the lived ecology that surrounds us. With a particular interest in accessing Tane Mahuta, the deity of the forest, they invite us to attune to the environment and consider the role of self-care, kinaesthetic empathy, interdependence and intercorporeality (including the human and non-human).

Ko Puketotara te maunga | Puketotara is the mountain

Ko Waitakere te awa | Waitakere is the river

Ko te Wao nui a Tiriwa te ngahere | The Great Forest of Tiriwa is the forest

Ko nga Tai Whakatu a Kupe te moana | The raised seas of Kupe is the ocean

Ko Te Au o Te Whenua te tangata | Te Au o Te Whenua is the person

Ko Te Kawerau a Maki te iwi | Te Kawerau a Maki is the tribe

Tihei mauri ora! | Let there be life!

The Hauntology of Inheritance is one of twelve projects as part of Walking about, a contemporary art series that explores the relationship between walking and art. Walking about has received generous support from Auckland Council, Albert-Eden Local Board and Whau Local Board. Individual walks will be announced at walkingabout.nz and on Te Uru’s website and social media pages.

We encourage you to bring prams and scooters and pack a picnic. We will share some food together at the end of walk in the picnic area of the walkway.

A shuttle van will be available from New Lynn train station and Te Uru in Titirangi on the day. Book van tickets and register for the walk at eventbrite.co.nz.