Ngā Ariki Kaipūtahi, Whakatōhea, Te Rarawa, Ngāti Uenuku, Tūwharetoa
Practicing Visual & Performing Artist. Teacher. Senior Advisor Indigenous Exchange CNZ
BA. Dip Teaching. MMVA. PhD Student Indigenous studies
Tāwera Tahuri is a mixed media artist covering a wide range of mediums and techniques. Influenced by the work of artists such as Basquiat, Klee, Picasso, Kura Te Waru Rewiri and Emere Karaka, she has produced a prolific amount of work throughout her artistic career. A mother of six children and grandmother of five, she is actively involved in her community as an artist, activist, teacher, and performer.
Her seven-piece mixed media sculptural installation, exhibited in Florence, Italy, entitled “Tamanui. Seven Generations" is inspired by her iwi (Tribe) and the recent revival her people have experienced. Their Treaty of Waitangi land Claim WAI 507 has been an integral part of this revitalisation, and this has been the basis of her recent bodies of work.
Her involvement as an exhibiting artist in the Florence Biennale, Italy has opened doors for Tāwera who now has an active exhibition calendar both nationally and internationally.
The Seventh-Generation principle is an important component of the people of Tamanui (the eponymous ancestor of Ngā Ariki Kaipūtahi) as it serves not only as a reminder of the wrongs of the past but also the hopes and aspirations of the future seven generations. She is also descended from Te Rarawa, Whakatōhea, Rongowhakaata, Ngāti Uenuku and Tūwharetoa. Whānau is everything to Tāwera and she strives to consistently uphold the mana of each of her tūpuna. Through her artistry, and creative endeavours she seeks to share indigenous knowledges and connect with other indigenous peoples in a range of exhibition contexts.
In 2010 and 2012 Tāwera, with her husband Henare also a visual and performing artist completed x2 6-week residencies at Evergreen State University in Olympia Washington State USA.
Tāwera is passionate about freshwater ways and is actively involved in the care and maintenance of sacred waterways and takes her role as a 'kaitiaki' or guardian seriously. Ko au te wai, ko te wai ko au. I am the water, and the water is me.
Tāwera stood proudly in solidarity at Standing Rock North Dakota and continues to stand today. Mni wiconi! Water is life!
As a board member for The Seventh Generation Fund for Indigenous Peoples, Tāwera is committed to indigenous issues across the world and proudly represents her peoples alongside her wider indigenous family.
Tāwera is currently studying for a PhD in Indigenous Studies with Te Whare Wānanga O Awanuiarangi. She also holds a BA from Toihoukura and MMVA from Massey University, NZ.
Tāwera accepts Art Commissions. Please feel free to use the contact page for further information.