20 May to 13 August 2017
Whakapī employs virtual environments and 3D printing technologies to propose new creative principals and philosophies within Māori art and culture.
Taepa uses the analogy of the iro, or maggot, from which the term whakairo (meaning carving or artistry) derives. When Māori observed iro eating the flesh of a carcass, they saw that the maggots would leave a circular patterns on soft-bone tissue. This reductive process became the philosophical basis for Māori carving in pre-colonial times.
In working with 3D printed imagery today, Taepa replaces the iro with a pī, or honey bee, to create a new philosophical principle for his art practice. Unlike the reductive process of whakairo, the creation of a beehive is an additive manufacturing process, where the bees essentially 3D print a home for their young using wax secretions from their abdomen. Here Taepa reconsiders philosophical concepts from te ao Māori in order to make sense of contemporary circumstances.
Whakapī exhibition text available in pdf downloadable format below.
Whakapī wall text