'Ki Mua, Ki Muri' a new book charting the path of Toioho ki Āpiti

Monday 27 November 2023

'Ki Mua, Ki Muri' examines the last 25 years of the influential programme that sought to revitalise what it means to be Māori in modern-day Aotearoa. As penned by the forewords of artist Nigel Borell, “Toioho ki Āpiti has led the quiet revolution in Māori art.”

Associate Professor Kura Te Waru-Rewiri at the blessing of 'Ki Mua, Ki Muri: 25 years of Toiohi ki Āpiti.'

Last updated: Tuesday 28 November 2023

At the heart of the contemporary art evolution of the 1990s stood the dedicated students and teachers of the Toioho ki Āpiti programme at Te Kunenga ki Pūrehuroa Massey University.

Toioho ki Āpiti is a game-changer, driven by Māori leadership and fuelled by the powerful principles of Mana Whakapapa, Mana Tiriti, Mana Whenua, and Mana Tangata. Project Lead Associate Professor Kura Te Waru-Rewiri, Ngāpuhi, Ngāti Kahu, Ngāti Rangi, Ngāti Kauwhata, highlights how this thematic approach flourishes through the enriched personal experiences and growth of individuals.

“We set out to revitalise te reo Māori, crafting our thematic approach. Mana whakapapa as the first year was about themselves and where they saw themselves to be and in some cases that could have been quite traumatic but they were in an environment where we would surround them and be supportive of their journey with acknowledgement or the heightened awareness of what it was and what it is to be Māori today and in contemporary Aotearoa.”

Despite the programme's modest intake of students, their alumni amongst the academic staff over the 25 years have significantly shaped contemporary Māori art. Ki Mua, Ki Muri holds a series of intimate conversations with these alumni, among them is Associate Professor Kura Te Waru-Rewiri, Israel Tangaroa Birch, and Ngatai Taepa.

These graduates are dispersed across various roles from leading artists to academic figures, curators, and arts advocates, and have amplified Māori art's presence, discourse, and leadership both locally and globally.

The launch of Ki Mua, Ki Muri: 25 years of Toiohi ki Āpiti received a heartfelt blessing from Deputy Vice-Chancellor Māori Professor Meihana Durie and was graciously supported by the whānau of Te Pūtahi-A-Toi and Toi Rauwhārangi College of Creative Arts. Contributors to the book from various parts of Aotearoa were virtually present, and around a third of the featured artists also joined the blessing

Ki Mua, Ki Muri: 25 years of Toiohi ki Āpiti can be purchased at the Massey University Press.

Related news

Welcoming Theia as the Mātairangi Mahi Toi Artist in Residence

Friday 24 November 2023

The award-winning Theia, Waikato-Tainui, Ngāti Tīpa, is the 2023-24 recipient of the Mātairangi Mahi Toi Artist Residency.

Renowned musical director empowers Pacific youth to unlock potential through performance

Friday 24 November 2023

An upcoming free community event that celebrates the journey of Pacific peoples marks the latest chapter in a wider initiative to empower and inspire Pacific youth.

A degree 13 years in the making

Monday 27 November 2023

After a rough start to tertiary study and a long break in the middle, Brian Toleafoa graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Palmerston North last week.