Three new exhibitionsshowcasing contemporary visual art will open at Te Kōputu a te whanga a Toi on Saturday 7 December, with a focus on celebrating and inspiring the creativity of local rangatahi. From established artist and academic Dr Maureen Lander to local Māori Art students past and present, the shows collectively explore the academic pathways open to rangatahi curious about art as a career.

Te Kōputu a te whanga a Toi Curator, Sarah Hudson, says her team has dedicated several months organising this unique show and she is looking forward to the end result. “It’s exciting to have the galleries filled with artists from opposite ends of the same Māori art spectrum,” Miss Hudson says. “Exhibiting emerging artists alongside Maureen, who is a master in her field, will make for dynamic viewing.”

Flat-Pack Whakapapa, PUNA and Pā Harakeke opens at Te Koputu a te whanga a Toi | Whakatāne Library & Exhibition Centre at 10:30am on Saturday, 7 December. Flat-Pack Whakapapaby Dr Maureen Lander is a touring show from The Dowse Gallery, and she will present an artist’s talk at the launch.  Anyone is welcome to attend this event and bookings are not required.

Miss Hudson says the opportunity to curate the three exhibitions is thrilling. “Each individual exhibition is different, but collectively tell a compelling story about the significance of Māori art,” she says. “Space will be available for anyone inspired by these works to create their own art and have it displayed at Te Kōputu.”

The exhibition runs from 7 December 2019 to 29 January 2020 at Te Kōputu a te whanga a Toi – the Whakatāne Library and Exhibition Centre. For more information visit www.whakatanemuseum.org.nz