• Ron Bull
  • Stefan Marks
  • Janine Randerson
  • Rachel Shearer
  • Heather Purdie

Ngā raraunga o te Mākū: te hā o Haupapa, the data of moisture, the breath of Haupapa, is a new iteration in a series of artworks that emanate from Haupapa Tasman glacier. Haupapa is a body of ice formed from a deep exhalation of Aoraki, the ancestor mauka, as he readied to speak. The glacier is transforming into Aotearoa’s fastest-growing body of wai in the lake below releasing the ancient breath of those who walked there long ago.

Live weather data recorded by NIWA Taihoro Nukurangi instruments near the Haupapa glacier are streamed continuously to form a site-responsive installation based on physical data of local weather conditions. The digital measurements spur Ron Bull’s voicings of names of elemental ancestors, recorded live on the lake, to gift and acknowledge Kāi Tahu names and mātauraka. The software also selects from a set of underwater images of glacial fragments and live hydrophone and atmospheric sound recordings. The ordering and qualities of sound and video are decided by the weather conditions of Aoraki. On days of high solar radiation, bright, clear ice and sun predominate and move the images on screen accordingly; on cloudy days, the image darkens. For the artwork’s iteration at Blue Oyster, the fluctuations of the data set are visible in the second room of the gallery.

Glaciologist Heather Purdie guided the artists at Haupapa. She found that the glacier is melting from within crevasses in the glacier accumulation area that retain the sun’s heat, and that at the end of Haupapa there are submerged ice ramps in the lake, which cause large icebergs to split off and accelerate the glacier’s recession. Bull also guided and fuelled the project with an ethos of gifting and offering as we respond to the transforming elements.

Collaborating artists: Ron Bull (voice); Stefan Marks (programming); Janine Randerson (video); Rachel Shearer (sound); Heather Purdie (glaciologist and scientific advisor).

The first two iterations of this project were commissioned for the programme Huarere: Weather Eye, Weather Ear as part of the World Weather Network online and at Te Tuhi in Tāmaki Makaurau from 2022-23.

Creative New Zealand Toi Aotearoa; NIWA Taihoro Nukurangi; Auckland University of Technology; Te Tuhi and the World Weather Network; Hocken Collections Uare Taoka o Hākena.

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  • Saturday, 11am–3pm


  • 16 Dowling Street
  • Ōtepoti, Dunedin