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Te Toi Whakairo: The Art of Māori Carving—Sir Hirini Moko Mead (1986)

This book on Māori carving is written by Sir Hirini Moko Mead, a leading authority on Māori art and culture and a driving force behind the seminal Te Māori exhibition.

Publication details

Mead, S. M. Te Toi Whakairo: The Art of Maori Carving. Auckland: Reed, 1986.

About the book

Sir Hirini Moko Mead is a leading authority on Māori art and culture and a driving force behind he seminal Te Māori exhibition. He is a respected leader of his Ngāti Awa tribe, has had a distinguished university career in New Zealand and North America and has published numerous books. However, one of the most significant contributions Sir Mead has made to New Zealand was his role as the driving force behind the seminal Te Māori, the first international exhibition of taonga Māori from New Zealand museum collections. The exhibition opened in 1983 at New York’s Metropolitan Museum and toured across the United States to much success and acclaim, returning to tour New Zealand in 1986.  One of the many important successes of Te Māori was that for the first time taonga were displayed as works of art and not ethnographic specimens. Mead beautifully explores this notion further in this publication, Te Toi Whakairo: The Art of Māori Carving (1986), was written for those who want to understand more about New Zealand’s original and most representative art form. Beginning with carvings’ mythical origins, Te Toi Whakairo explores the evolution of styles and techniques of the four main artistic periods through to the present day. It also provides detailed examples of carving styles from different tribal regions and uses examples from wharenui and leading artists.

Further information 

 

This publication is part of the series Te Takarangi: Celebrating Māori publications - a sample list of 150 non-fiction books produced by a partnership between Royal Society Te Apārangi and Ngā Pae o te Māramatanga.