Intervention 2020, carved acrylic, 800 x 300 x 60mm   An acrylic rendition of an over-sized wahaika or Maori war club with a series of additional motifs embossed upon it. One striking feature of this work is that it is penetrated by a Celtic or Victorian cross, which renders the weapon defunct as it is structurally weakened, next there is the appropriation of the Korotangi, (the bird of sorrow) Another highly prized Atua or God-figure discovered in the Raglan area but not of Maori or even Polynesian origin, (it is carved from Indonesian stone) Korotangi is revered and endowed with remarkable Maori myth-histories. This layering of information makes for a complex reading where each layer compounds and problematises the next. The overall allusion of this work points towards a post-colonial condition where traversing the origins of tradition becomes labyrinthian, some threads are navigable and others beyond comprehension. Combined they form an intricate cultural tapestry.


Oliver Stretton Pow - Artist | Sculptor - New Zealand