19 Mar 2012

Maori invite NZ Pacific artists to attend festival

7:57 am on 19 March 2012

Creative New Zealand has announced about 100 Maori and New Zealand-based Pacific artists will represent Aotearoa alongside 27 other Pacific countries at the 11th Festival of Pacific Arts.

The festival in July is regarded as the premiere arts and culture event for the Pacific region with Te Waka Toi, the Maori Arts Board of Creative New Zealand responsible for representing Aotearoa at the event.

Te Arikinui King Tuheitia will be leading the delegation to the Solomon Islands as traditional head.

Invitations to the festival have been made to tangata whenua of each country with Maori extending the call for New Zealand-based Pacific people to travel along with them.

Te Waka Toi chairperson Darrin Haimona says the organisation is happy to collaborate with Pasifika artists and it acknowledges their close kinship ties with them.

The chairperson of the Pacific Arts Community of Creative New Zealand, Pele Walker, says for Pasifika artists living in New Zealand it is important to reconnect with their origins, while showcasing the influences they have from living in Aotearoa.

The festival runs for 13 days from the beginning of July in Honiara.