This year, alongside celebrating the 50th Anniversary of the first Gay Liberations march lead by Ngahuia Te Awekotuku in 1972, Auckland Pride is launching its first-ever Takatāpui Festival.
With a key focus on Tangata Whenua of our Māori Pride Whānau, we hope to offer a multifaceted, inclusive, & grounded Kaupapa - where Takatāpui, Tangata Ira Rere, Tangata Ira Whiti may come together in hāporitanga to share & exchange their truths, joy & abundance. The beginning of a new opportunity to embrace & learn, this month long public arts & cultural festival, Te Tīmatanga (the beginning), looks to celebrate the talents, resilience, nuances and lived experience of Aotearoa’s Kāhui (constellation) Takatāpui.
By commissioning over 16 Takatāpui Artists to showcase their work through Public Art installations across Karangahape Road, Aotea Square, Albert Park, Britomart, Commercial Bay, the Viaduct & Silo Park we hope to whakatīnana (embody) a Kāhui as a shining beacon of light, reflecting their own Pakiwaitara (personal history). Together they stand connected, as a cluster of practitioners that in unison show the City & indeed the world the importance, reverence & beauty of Takatāpuitanga.
Artists & venues to be announced in the new year!
Throughout Pride month whānau will have the opportunity to join us every week on hikoi (guided walking tours) led by our Kaiwhakahaere Takatāpui, Hāmiora Bailey (Ngāti Porou Ki Harataunga, Ngāti Huarere). These walking tours hope to bring community together in activity, acknowledging the landscape of Tāmaki Makaurau & getting to know the work and each other through whakawhitiwhiti kōrero (discussion).
A map of the works, as well as artists bios & interviews will live online on our newly updated Auckland Pride website. Whānau who wish to explore the city and discover our Kāhui Takatāpui in their own time can do so while enjoying the warmth of Tamanui-te-ra and the embrace of Hine Raumati within the CBD.
Albert Park’s Caretaker’s Cottage will exist as the centre of our constellation, hosting a further 10 Takatāpui artists in a more traditional gallery setting - with for-sale works, short-film screenings and evenings hosted by different kaikōrero programmed throughout the month.
Te Tīmatanga acknowledges that as Takatāpui, each and every single one of us, deserve to relish in our own origins, our whakapapa & our primordial relationship to Te Taiāo & Ngā Atua. We hope to provide a space where looking inwards towards ourselves, and looking backwards into our Tīpuna’s eyes, we might be better acquainted with our own inception. Each piece of art shown within the festival is but an expression of this and the whakatauki “ka mua, ka muri’’
This festival is not an arrival. Through whakapapa we know that we are all a continuation of the beginning, and as agents of our whakapapa we should have the opportunity to bask in ourselves, and find ways to communicate who we are through our storytelling in the present. As Te Ira Tangata are the Te Tīmatanga extending outwards and onwards into forever. We too are not an arrival, but the next step forward, or toi of the waka onwards across an everflowing ocean of Whakapapa, we are here because of the current that was set for us by our Fore-Takatāpui within our own bloodlines and histories.
We are awhiowhio, a growing kaleidoscopic fern frond: and in 2022 Pride we are hoping to make physical what we all know is true - indigenous joy is the beginning of the universe.