National Weavers Hui comes to Te Tai Tokerau
The Weavers National Hui is held biannually at marae throughout Aotearoa and has been ongoing since 1983. This year it will be held in Te Tai Tokerau at NorthTec | Te Pūkenga’s Raumanga campus in Whāngarei.
The hui is a four-day event, held from Friday 20th of October to Monday 23rd of October, which will consist of kōrero, wānanga, and dedicated weaving time.
“The purpose of the Hui is to maintain weaving traditions of the past, identify areas for retention, growth, and development, and inspire new thinking,” explains Te Hemo Ata Henare. “It also provides a special opportunity for hosts to showcase their region and weaving practices to a national assembly of weavers.”
Te Hemo Ata Henare is a member of Te Roopu Raranga Whatu o Aotearoa (TRRWOA). She is also a Pouako (teacher) at NorthTec | Te Pūkenga where she teaches the weaving strand of the Maunga Kura Toi (Bachelor of Māori Art).
The hui is for members only and is attended by approximately 200 registered members of Te Roopu Raranga Whatu o Aotearoa from around the motu, their elected National Committee members, Te Kāhui Whiritoi (the class of master weavers formally acknowledged by TRRWOA), Toi Māori, and hosts.
For members of the public who are interested in the process of weaving or are keen to see some of the Toi produced, the hui will be open on Sunday the 22nd from 3:30 pm to 6:30 pm. All members of the public are welcome to come along to visit and see the mahi the weavers have produced, engage with the participants, and ask questions.
There will also be two exhibitions open over the hui, they are as follows:
NorthTec | Te Pūkenga’s Geoff Wilson Gallery at their Raumanga Campus has an exhibition celebrating the late Toi Te Rito Maihi who passed away last year, who was a past National committee member and part of the Kahui Whiri toi. This has been made possible with her whanau who have collected many of her artworks around the country to celebrate her skill base as a practitioner of the Nga toi. This exhibition will run for two weeks.
The 2nd exhibition is celebrating Tai Tokerau raranga at the Hihiaua Cultural Centre on Saturday 21st opening at 10 am.
“NorthTec | Te Pūkenga is honoured to be hosting the National Hui. This has been a fantastic opportunity to showcase mahi raranga for Te Tai Tokerau,” says Lorraine King, Pathway Manager for Maunga Kura Toi and Pouako for the Rauangi (visual arts) strand. “We are excited to have some amazing speakers who will be sharing their knowledge about various things regarding Māori Arts. The caliber of weavers that come together is such an event is something to behold and I am excited myself to watch, listen and learn.”