Date30 Jul 2023
Ko Te Reo Māori on the Streets tētahi kaupapa e haere tonu ana nā ĀKAU e kitea ai te whakatinanatanga o ngā mahi toi ā-tātai tuhituhi mā tētahi kaupapa hoahoa ako ngātahi. Nā ngā taitamariki o te takiwā i whakaara i runga i te hiahia kia nui ake Te Reo Māori e kitea mai ana i Kaikohe, kua peitahia ētahi hoahoa e tohu ana i ngā whakataukī me ngā kupu matua ki runga i ngā whare o te tiriti matua o Kaikohe hei kōkiri i Te Reo Māori me te whakaata i te āhua o te tāone e pīrangitia ana e te hapori.
Kua panonitia te hōputu o ia o ngā matarahi e whitu i konei hei kara, e whakauru ana i tētahi wāhanga o ngā hoahoa ki te whare whakaatu. I muri i te whakaaturanga, ka hoki ngā kara ki Kaikohe hei koha ki ia o ngā rōpū hoahoa hei whakaatu i tō rātou kura.
E ārahi ana a ĀKAU i te tukanga hoahoa mā ngā wheako ako ā-ringa e āta whakarite ana kei te pū o ā rātou mahi ngā hiahia me ngā wawata o te hapori, mai i te tīmatanga ki te mutunga. Mai i te whakatūnga o te taupuni hoahoa o ĀKAU i te tau 2015, kua mahi rātou i ngā kaupapa maha, mai i ngā mahere matua nui, ki ngā papakāinga, marae, ngā takiwā i rō whare me te mahi toi.
I tīmata ki ngā papamahi hanga mahere, ā, i aro tika te kaupapa Te Reo Māori on the Streets ki ngā āhuatanga i tautohua e ngā taitamariki hei whakaatu i roto i ngā hoahoa matarahi. I āwhina te papamahi ki te whakakotahi i ngā ariā hoahoa me ngā kōrero mō te tae, te tauira, me te whakatakoto, i tuituia ki ngā whakataukī i kōwhiria e ia rōpū. Kātahi ka whakawhanakehia ngā ariā tuatahi me ngā whakaaro o ētahi atu o ngā kaiauaha o te whānau o ĀKAU i mua i te tāhuahua hei matarahi ā-peita whānui rawa.
He mea nui ki te angitu o te kaupapa te āta whakarite ko te reo o ngā tamariki te tūāpapa o te kaupapa. Kua tino rerekē te āhua whakapū o Kaikohe, otirā te āhua e titiro ai ngā taitamariki ki tō rātou tāone. E whakatō ana ā rātou mahi hoahoa e hora ana ki ngā pakitara o ngā whare i te rangatiratanga me te whakahī, otirā e mōhiotia nei e ĀKAU kua rerekē te āhua o te pāhekoheko me te whakaute o ngā tamariki i tō rātou paekiritata. He tauira te tukanga mahitahi hohonu a ĀKAU mō te whakatipu hononga pakari me te hononga ki te wāhi mā te hoahoa, e āhei ai ngā panonitanga tūturu ki te āhua e noho ai, e hono ai hoki ki ngā wāhi tūmatanui paetata.
Kei Te Taitokerau me Tāmaki Makaurau rātou, ā, e whakarato ana a ĀKAU i ngā arawātea auaha mā ngā Kaiako, ngā kura me ngā rōpū hapori. Ka whakaniko rātou i te mātauranga mā te manawa reka, te whakahihiko me te whakatipu pūkenga me ngā taitamariki mā te whai wāhi ki te tukanga hoahoa a ĀKAU. Ka āwhina rātou i ngā whakahaere mā te whakamahi i tētahi tukanga auaha hei āwhina ki te whakarite whakaaro, hiahia me ngā wawata me ngā whānau mō ngā kaupapa hapori.
Te Reo Māori on the Streets is an ongoing project by ĀKAU which sees typographic artworks realised through a collaborative learning design kaupapa. Sparked by local taitamariki who wanted to see more reo Māori visible in Kaikohe, designs referencing whakataukī and kupu matua have been painted across buildings on the main street of Kaikohe to champion te reo Māori and reflect the way the hāpori wish to see their town.
Each of the seven completed murals has been reformatted here as a banner to bring the designs into the gallery. Following the exhibition, the banners will travel back to Kaikohe to be gifted to the design rōpū for display at their kura.
ĀKAU leads the design process through hands-on learning experiences that ensure hāpori needs and aspirations are at the centre of their mahi, from start to finish. Since the establishment of the ĀKAU design studio in 2015, the ĀKAU team have worked on a multitude of kaupapa, from large masterplans to papakāinga, marae, interior spaces and mahi toi.
Beginning with brief-building papamahi (workshops), the Te Reo Māori on the Streets project drew directly on what taitamariki said they wanted to communicate in the mural designs. Papamahi helped bring design concepts together, with kōrero about colour, pattern and composition woven together with the foundational whakataukī selected by each rōpū. Initial concepts were then developed with input from other creatives from the ĀKAU whānau before being rendered as large-scale painted murals.
Ensuring the voices of taitamariki were central to the kaupapa was essential to its success. The murals have fundamentally changed the way Kaikohe looks, but also the way taitamariki see their town. Seeing their designs on the sides of buildings gives a sense of ownership and pride – it has changed the way taitamariki interact with and respect their neighbourhood. ĀKAU’s collaborative process offers a model for building strong relationships and connection to place through design, enabling real change in the way communities exist and relate to local public spaces.
Ngā mihi to Tash Nikora, Dina Mcleod, Catherine Griffiths, Kyra Clarke and The Treehouse Creative