To close his exhibition 'Kia Tūhono ki te Taiao', Warren Maxwell will perform alongside Ariana Tikao, a night of story telling through waiata and sound.
Warren Maxwell will be playing a large paewai (driftwood) that he procured from Pounui lagoon at the southern end of Lake Wairarapa. This is adorned with strings and struck, bowed and plucked to coax a world of sounds from within. He will be joined by Ariana Tikao who will perform taonga pūoro.
Of this performance Maxwell says: “I am grateful to have found a creative direction that supports and aligns with my own journey of re-connecting to my whakapapa, but also presents an opportunity for others who might be on a similar journey, or just open-minded enough to consider indigenous perspectives on music creation. I love the notion that songs were the ancient repositories (hard drives) for knowledge.”
Warren Maxwell (Ngāi Tuhoe, Ngāti Rakaipaaka, Ngāti Tūkairangi, Scottish, English, Scandinavian) is a familiar name in New Zealand music. As a founding member of Trinity Roots, Fat Freddy’s Drop and Little Bushman, he has brought his very personal songwriting style and delivery to countless people across the motu for over two decades.
In recent years Maxwell has turned to instrument making and sound installation as a mode to present his ideas. His current exhibition at Pyramid Club, Kia Tūhono ki te Taiao - 'Re-connecting to the Natural World', features several of Maxwell's sculptural works.
Ariana Tikao is a composer and performer of waiata in te reo Māori and English, as well as a leading player of taonga puoro. She was named as a 2020 Arts Laureate by the New Zealand Arts Foundation and was presented with the Jillian Friedlander Te Moana-Nui-a-Kiwa Award. Although now living in Wellington, her music is inspired and influenced by her Kāi Tahu ancestry and the dramatic landscape of Te Wai Pounamu, and explores her Kāi Tahu identity and mana wahine. Ariana began writing waiata in the Kāi Tahu dialect while studying at Otago University in the early 1990s. She is also a published poet and writer.
Special thanks to Creative NZ for their support of Pyramid Club's programme.