Kā Kaihōpara is a journey of discovery – exploring concepts, materials, and ways of making and seeing. Taking the material language of modern building and construction, Peter Robinson (Kāi Tahu) creates a speculative and open-ended installation that navigates audiences through ideas that have been occupying him over a recent period of research.
Working with aluminium, plastic, paper, pen and ink, Robinson activates a series of overlapping discussions about art, history, migration, and storytelling. His drawings talk to one another across the gallery, and across the span of his practice. They introduce new characters into Robinson’s existing library of marks and forms, and are joined in turn by the works of friends and whānau to create an ever-expanding conversation. Sculptures inhabit the centre – structures, vehicles, shelters, and travellers that both shore up and disrupt ways of considering migration, occupation and encounter. Offcuts are Robinson’s ahi kā, continuing to stoke the fires of a continuous history of art making.
Peter Robinson (Kāi Tahu) studied sculpture at Ilam School of Fine Arts from 1985-89, and is presently an Associate Professor Fine Arts and Associate Dean Māori of the Faculty of Creative Arts and Industries, Te Waka Tūhura Elam School of Fine Arts and Design, University of Auckland. From the late 1980s to the present, his practice has traversed a landscape of ideas and modes; stirring up discussion, unsettling the status-quo, and contributing to a robust and internationally-engaged discourse around contemporary art from Aotearoa. Robinson spent time living and working in Ōtepoti Dunedin as the Aotearoa New Zealand Visiting Artist for 2023.
He haereka whakahura a Kā Kaihōpara – e whakatōmenetia ana kā ariā, kā papaka me kā ara waihaka, kā ara titiro. Nā te reo ake o te haka whare, o te whakatūtū whare o ēnei raki Peter Robinson (Kāi Tahu) i waihaka ai he whakaaturaka whakapae, he whakaaturaka tiria te whakaaro e whakateaea ana te huka mātakitaki ki kā mahara ōhona e noho ana ki a ia i tērā wāhaka rakahau i kā rā tata nei ko hori.
Mā te mahi ki te konumohe, te kirihou, te pepa, te pene, me te waituhi ka whakahiko i te tereka kōrerorero e tāpiki ana e hākai ki te toi, ki te tāhuhu kōrero, ki te hekeka, ā, ki te kōrero pūrākau anō hoki. Ka whakawhitiwhiti kōrero āhana tuhika ki roto i te ahurewa, ā, kai te roaka hoki o āhana mahi toi. Ka whakatakina he kiripuaki hou ki te pū o ā Robinson tohu, o āhana āhuataka, ā, ko hono hoki i tōhona wā ki te mahi o ōhona hoa, o ōhona whānau kia wātea ai te tipu me te rea o te paepae kōrero. Ka noho āhuru nei kā whakairo ki te pūtahi – he akaka, he waka, he wharau me he takata pōkai whenua ka whakatāmorehia, ā, ka whakararuhia hoki kā huatau o te hekeka, o te nohoka whenua me te tūtakihaka takata. Ko kā pororere, ko te ahi kā ki a Robinson, e toutou tou ana kā ahi o te mahika toutaka o te mahi toi.
I kuraina a Peter Robinson (Kāi Tahu) ki te Kura Toi Ātaka o Ilam mai i te tau 1985 ki te tau 1989, ā, ka noho ia hai Ahoraki Tūhono o te Toi Ātaka, hai Manukura Tūhono Māori hoki ki Te Waka Tūhura te Kura Toi Ātaka o Elam ki Waipapa Taumata Rau. Mai i te whiore o te tekau-tau 80 ā mohoa noa nei, ko pōkaia e tāhana mahi he horanuku o te whakaaro, o kā tau tānui; e tiritiri nei i te matapakika, e whakararu ana i tō nāianei tūāhua, ā, ka kōparepare hoki ki te kōrero tōtōpū, aka ā-ao mō te toi o nāianei nō Aotearoa. I noho, ā, i mahi hoki a Robinson ki Ōtepoti hai rikatoi noho o Aotearoa i te tau 2023. He hōtaka ko tokona e Toi Aotearoa me te Kura Toi o Ōtepoti.
A Dunedin Public Art Gallery Visiting Artist Programme, supported by Creative New Zealand Toi Aotearoa. Project Partner, Dunedin School of Art.