Reuben Paterson

Aotearoa New Zealand, b.1973
Ngāti Rangitihi, Tūhourangi, Ngāi Tūhoe, Māori, Scottish

Te Pūtahitanga ō Rehua

  • 2005
  • Single-channel digital video animation, black and white, duration 4 mins 22 secs, continuous
  • Purchased, 2009
  • 2009/035

As a young boy, Reuben Paterson used to play with the sparkling black sand on Piha beach; now as an artist he often uses glitter in his works. In this one, he took inspiration from Māori mythology connected with water, cleansing, transformation and stars. Pūtahitanga can mean constellation. Rehua was a son of Rangi-nui (the sky father) and Papa-tū-ā-nuku (the earth mother), and is associated in Tūhoe legend with the star Antares. To make this dazzling kaleidoscopic landscape, Paterson digitally layered and rearranged his own drawings. He likens the shifting black and white patterns to the restless energies and histories that have unfolded on the whenua (land) of Aotearoa New Zealand. Their optical push-and-pull highlights that what can be seen depends on who is doing the looking. What catches your eye?

(Wheriko - Brilliant! 17 May 2019 – 16 February 2020)

Exhibition History