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Maori Art Meets America

Maori Art Meets America

Proclamation – “Toi Maori: Eternal Thread Day” in San Francisco!

It's official. Thursday 4 August 2005 will go down in San Francisco’s history as “Toi Maori Eternal Thread Day”. Mayor Gavin Newsom made the announcement when he visited the exhibition Toi Maori: Art from the Maori people of New Zealand last Thursday night. In a live television broadcast, Mayor Newsom marked the honour by presenting New Zealand with a certificate of proclamation which pays credit to the work being done to retain Maori culture and heritage and for the contribution of the Maori Art Meets America event to the city of San Francisco.

The people of San Francisco have embraced the Maori Art Meets America event in an overwhelming way. Media coverage has been extensive throughout America, including television broadcasts and the event appearing on the front cover and a three page article on Maori art in the ‘pink pages’, San Francisco’s events guide.

As a result visitor numbers to the exhibition look like they will exceed expectations with around 12,000 people visiting since the opening on Friday 5th August. The exhibition is averaging 2,500 visitors a day and this looks like increasing in its last few days

A further 2000 people have watched the waka demonstrations and around 2500 have watched the daily shows by Kapa Haka group Te Puia, from Rotorua. Today the Kapa Haka group had a crowd of 1,000 today in the Yerba Beuna Gardens (outside the Yerba Beuna Center for the Arts) and this was extremely well received.

The Travel agents who represent NZ in San Francisco have been inundated with enquiries and stunned by the success of the project. Air NZ have been overwhelmed by the response as well.


Photos by Edward Casati

New Zealand Ambassador John Wood holds the certificate declaring August 4th 2005 “Toi Maori: Eternal Thread Day” presented by San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom (centre) on behalf of the California State Assembly and accepted by Darcy Nicholas, Creative Director of the Maori Art Meets America event.

Te Arikinui Dame Te Atairangikaahu (The Maori Queen) and Darcy Nicholas, centre, (Creative Director, Maori Art Meets America) lead the Mayor of San Francisco and the delegation of artists and dignitaries into the exhibition Toi Maori: Art From the Maori People of New Zealand

NZ dignitaries attend the opening of the exhibition Toi Maori: Art
From the Maori People of New Zealand from left to right: Whatumoana Paki (husband of the Maori Queen), Waana Davis (Chairperson, Toi Maori Aotearoa), Te Arikinui Dame Te Atairangikaahu (The Maori Queen), Dame Georgina Kirby (trustee of Toi Maori Aotearoa), Atareta Maxwell (wife of Trevor Maxwell) and Trevor Maxwell (Toi Maori Aotearoa Trustee and Deputy Mayor of Rotorua).

© Scoop Media

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