Made from the charred remains of a fishing boat, Hotere’s ‘Black phoenix’ (1984) recalls the origins of his iwi, Te Aupōuri. Beset by a neighbouring group, Ngāti Ruanui set fire to their pā, burnt everything of value and escaped under the cover of black smoke. Following their escape, they renamed and reinvented themselves as Te Aupōuri at the direction of their chief. The name recalled both the event and the current and colour of the river that was turned dark by smoke and ash from the remains of their pā.
Tāngia te kōrero katoa
Te whakamahi i tēnei tūemi
Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa
Reference: 1988-0030-1/AA to BZ
Permission of the Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa must be obtained before any re-use of this image.