Te Papa celebrates Matariki with a special focus on te taiao

Matariki at Te Papa is dedicated to remembering the past, celebrating the present and planning for the future.

The special celebrations at Te Papa begin on Friday 2 July and run through until Sunday 11 July.

With an important focus on wellbeing of our communities and environment, Te Papa is hosting a number of events for the whole whānau. From the museum’s first ever Seed Swap Day to live performances across music and the arts, there is something for everyone at Te Papa during Matariki this year.

Kaihautū Dr Arapata Hakiwai says with the support of He Kura Te Tangata Trust, Te Papa is very happy to host a digital presentation of Taikura Kapa Haka during Matariki 2021.

“While our beloved Taikura cannot travel to Te Papa this year, each of the groups from across the motu have recorded their bracket for us all to enjoy. Te Papa will launch the first performance on the evening of Friday 2 July, and the Taikura Kapa Haka showpieces will continue throughout the week via our digital platforms. We know everyone will relish these wonderful performances celebrating Taikura Kapa Haka!”

Seed Swap Day (Sun 4 Jul)

Rongowhakaata Iwi Trust and Te Papa invite visitors to take part in the museum’s first-ever Seed Swap Day by bringing along seeds to exchange and experience a fun-filled whānau day. Activities include māra-based workshops with the Sustainability Trust and conversations on food security, seed saving, composting, hauora, and much more.

Māoriland Film Festival (Fri 9 – Sun 11 Jul)

The Matariki programme also includes a mini Māoriland Film Festival which celebrates indigenous screen storytelling by presenting, facilitating, and supporting Māori and international Indigenous filmmakers and creatives.

Over three consecutive nights Te Papa’s main foyer will be transformed into a marae-style cinema. Visitors will enjoy a series of indigenous short films and one special feature film screened later on Friday.

Matariki Makers Workshop: Te Muriwai weavers (Sat 10 – Sun 11 Jul)

Te Papa is also delighted to host the talented weavers from Muriwai. These weavers from Tūranganui-a-Kiwa will demonstrate their raranga and visitors will have the opportunity to learn about the significance of the art form, from creating food gathering vessels to the adornment of whare.

Centre your wairua: Oro Atua music performance and rongoā tī (Fri 9 Jul)

Another highlight of the Matariki programme includes a special, one-off evening of hauora and rongoā tī.

Taking a holistic approach to rongoā Māori, Te Papa is collaborating with the Rongoā Collective of the A.R.T confederation and musician Jerome Kavanagh to produce a unique offering for visitors wairua.

Participants will receive kōrero and mātauranga on a variety of plant-based rongoā and their significant healing properties. During the evening visitors can blend their own rongoā tī and experience a fully immersive taonga puoro performance piece to uplift their wairua, leaving the audience calm and relaxed.


Te Taiao | Nature Whānau Day: All About Plants!, 2019. Photo by Jo Moore. Te Papa

Event listings

Seed Swap Day
Date: Sun 4 Jul, 11am – 3pm
Location: Rongomaraeroa | Te Marae, Level 4

Centre your wairua (spirit): Oro Atua music performance and rongoā tī (herbal tea)
Date: Fri 9 Jul, 6–7.30pm
Location: Icon, Level 2

Power to the pūoro (music)
Date: Sat 10 Jul, 10.30am – 12pm
Location: Rongomaraeroa | Te Marae, Level 4

Matariki Makers Workshop: Te Muriwai weavers
Date: Sat 10 Jul, 11am – 2pm & Sun 11 Jul, 10.30am – 12pm
Location: Rongomaraeroa | Te Marae and Te-Hau-ki-Tūranga, Level 4

More events to come – please visit our Matariki 2021 section for more details on this year’s exciting Matariki programme.

Media contact

Clare Callaghan, Communications Advisor