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Requiem for Ralph Hotere

12 Mar 2013

This content is tagged as All Artforms .

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Stephen Wainwright
Posted by Stephen Wainwright

Chief Executive - Pou Whakahaere

This is my first blog and it is with sadness that it has coincided with the recent passing of Ralph Hotere.

This is my first blog and it is with sadness that it has coincided with the recent passing of Ralph Hotere.

There have already been a number of heartfelt and thoughtful acknowledgements from people in the arts world like Ngahiraka Mason from Auckland Art Gallery who have marked his contribution.

The Prime Minister did too, which is an indication of Ralph Hotere’s mana. Ralph Hotere was a singular man and remarkable artist. His practice always seemed to be evolving and he enjoyed the dynamism of collaboration. In October 2013 there will be an exhibition at the Dunedin Public Art Gallery called Dark Matter featuring the collaborative works of Ralph Hotere and the 2013 Venice Biennale artist Bill Culbert which will be a timely reminder of his practice.

In this, the digital era there is no need to lament if you didn’t happen to catch the 2001 documentary Hotere by the late Merata Mita live on Maori TV on 26 February. You can catch it at NZonscreen.com. The film is terrifically informative and you get to see the wide range of his practice, his famous Port Chalmers house and insights into the person.

I was left wanting to hear more from the artist, but as we know he let his art do his talking to the extent that he rarely even went to his own exhibition openings.

Although I never knew Ralph Hotere personally, his work is a constant. In our Wellington Boardroom we have a fantastic 1973 work titled Requiem. This is strangely apt.

Thanks to our Creative New Zealand whanau who made the trip to join with those marking the artist’s passing at the service in Dunedin, and to the tangi in Mitimiti.