Andrew Paul Wood on Fiona Pardington's Tiki: Orphans of Māoriland

Andrew Paul Wood on Fiona Pardington's Tiki: Orphans of Māoriland


Wednesday 15 April 2020 / 6pm

Philip Carter Family Auditorium


Art historian and writer Andrew Paul Wood gives a talk on the inception of Fiona Pardington’s Tiki: Orphans of Maoriland, the mystery of what the tiki are and where they came from in the context of the early colonial period, and what they might mean in Pardington’s work.

Says Wood, “When Fiona Pardington found these unusual objects from the Wellcome Collection in London … she was struck by their mystery. Neither taonga, nor mass-produced trinket, they are as difficult to identify as their creators. Acquired from London auction houses, these faux hei-tiki were probably created for the Pākehā or international market. ... It is impossible to say whether they were carved by entrepreneurial Māori amateurs, Pākehā enthusiasts (or forgers), or German lapidaries for export back to New Zealand for tourist souvenirs – perhaps all of the above. Pardington felt an affinity with their personality, hybridity and in-betweeness. She re-appropriates and breathes life into them with her camera and reparative vision, giving them dignity as the orphans of a complex history of interaction, exchange and exploitation.”

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