February 04, 2021
Waitangi waka spectacular captured
The waka that are a major feature of Waitangi commemorations are being celebrated in an exhibition that opened yesterday at Te Kohanga Museum in Waitangi.
He Kaupapa Waka is anchored around the photographs of Te Rawhitiroa Bosch and also features sculptures by Hemi Eruera, Billy Harrison, Cori Masters and Joel Marsters, a soundscape to Tiki Taane, and the last two waka worked on by the late Sir Hekenukumai Busby, Tinana and Mamari.
Bosch, who with his cameras is a familiar figure at hui and events in the north, says he was a baby in his mother’s arms when his father was in the crew that paddled Ngatokimatawhāorua from Waitangi in the Whangaroa for a commemoration in 1987, and he’s always had a passion for waka.
The pictures were taken when he was shooting pictures for the Waitangi National Trust up on the Treaty Grounds at last year's Waitangi Day.
"I knew the waka were coming so I literally ran with all my heavy gear all the way down to the bottom, got there just in time to catch them all coming through under the bridge, so I got photos of each waka and then the karakia and all when they landed and it was there I knew I've got an exhibition," he says.
Te Rawhitiroa Bosch hopes after its nine-month run at in Waitangi He Kaupapa Waka will be picked up Te Papa so more people can share the experience.
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