Object: He Korero Purakau mo Te Awanui o Te Motu: story of a New Zealand river
This image has All Rights Reserved.
Please follow the Buy or license link under each image to apply to use this image. (Charges may apply)
Why you need to apply for the use of this image
Rights for this work may be:
- controlled by the artist, the artist's estate, or other rights holders; or
- unclear - Te Papa will do a more detailed analysis of the work’s rights history; or
- covered by Te Papa’s Mana Taonga principle which supports the rights of holders of traditional knowledge to determine how the image may be used.
You need to make sure you don’t infringe on the rights of third parties before you use this image. Our image request process helps with this. Te Papa does not authorise the use of this image beyond the uses allowed by the “fair dealing” provisions of the New Zealand Copyright Act, 1994.
More information about copyright
We recommend these resources for more information:
- Copyright in NZ - Ministry of Economic Development
- Copyright guidelines and resource - Lianza
- Enabling use and re-use - Digital NZ
Find more information about Te Papa's rights project on our blog, including how rights types are assigned.
Get in touch
Please contact email@example.com
- if you have any information regarding this work and rights to it, or
- if you wish to contact the rights holder for this work. We will assist where we can.
|Title||He Korero Purakau mo Te Awanui o Te Motu: story of a New Zealand river|
Parekowhai, Michael (artist), 2011, Auckland
|Medium summary||Original Steinway grand piano (Model D), brass, added timber, cast and flat bar steel, resin, ivory, ebony, mother of pearl, paua and lacquer|
|Materials||wood, ivory, brass, lacquer, steel, ebony, paua shell, resin, mother of pearl|
|Classification||sculpture, grand pianos|
x 1670mm (Height)
|Credit line||Purchased 2011, with the assistance of the Friends of Te Papa|
|Registration number||2011-0046-1/A-N to N-N|
'There is no object I could make … that could fill a room like sound can.'
Michael Parekowhai, 2011
He Korero Purakau mo Te Awanui o Te Motu: story of a New Zealand river is the central work of Michael Parekowhai’s 2011 Venice Biennale installation. It is his sixth piano sculpture and took more than 10 years to create.
Performance is key to the work, which aside from being a spectacular sculpture is also a perfectly tuned instrument – a Steinway concert grand piano. Parekowhai recounts hearing it played at its debut: ‘The object disappeared – the actual piano just kind of melted away.’
Many other ideas are also at play. The title refers to a 1920s New Zealand novel, which in turn inspired Jane Campion’s 1993 film The Piano. As Christchurch art curator Justin Paton has noted, Parekowhai ‘reverses the direction of these narratives’. No longer is ‘culture’ imported from Europe. In transforming the piano, Parekowhai shifts the perspective, boldly making New Zealand the source.
Paton asks: ‘Is it a European instrument decorated with Maori carving, or a Maori carving that has engulfed a piece of European high culture?’
Results from DigitalNZ
Disclaimer: This information was created from historic documentation, and may not necessarily reflect the best available knowledge about the item. Some collection images are created for identification purposes only and may not be of reproduction quality. Some images are not available due to copyright restrictions. If you have information or questions about objects in the collection, contact us using our enquiry form. You can also find out more about Collections Online.