Five black paintings. A red piano. In ‘Black Rainbow’, the works of two leading artists from two generations come together, conversing in colour, sound, and ideas.
In the early 1960s, Ralph Hotere became the first Māori artist to be embraced by New Zealand’s art mainstream. His poetic black paintings are among his best known. In 2011, Michael Parekowhai represented New Zealand at the Venice Biennale, with this piano as his central work.
But the obvious success of both artists is only part of what resonates here. Both also aim to actively engage the audience, and each makes the complex seem effortless.
Mā te tuakana ka tōtika te teina; mā te teina ka tōtika te tuakana.
By the older person, the younger learns; by the younger person, the older learns
Michael Parekowhai, He Kōrero Pūrākau mo Te Awanui o Te Motu: story of a New Zealand river, 2011. Purchased 2011, with the assistance of the Friends of Te Papa.
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Visit Arts Te Papa, the online home of art at Te Papa, for more information and images from Black Rainbow.
For more information on Black Rainbow, please contact:
Aaron Te One
Exhibitions Touring Manager
Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa
(04) 381 7191