There is a plethora of activities happening in the Bay this year for Matariki.
We’ve made it easy for you to find your dose of creativity – read our guide to find all things creative this Matariki!
Friday 7 June | The Incubator, Historic Village | Tauranga City Library
Things kick off with a bang this Matariki, with no less than four exhibitions opening on Friday 7 June. You can have your creative cake and eat it too, by making your way to our beautiful Historic Village where the People’s Gallery will be displaying an epic collection of Nga Toi Maori thanks to the collaboration of Arohanoa Mathews, April Shwe, Tiare Dickson, Skye Colonna, and Te Manaia Jennings. Grab a coffee and a treat from The Whipped Baker before heading to The Incubator Gallery, where you’ll be treated to a double-whammy display of Michelle Estall and Mumu Moore, both with similar kaupapa of empowerment and living without fear.
Meanwhile, the Tauranga City Library is exhibiting a collection of Maori portraits from photographer Kapua Joy Bennett: Matariki Hao Tāngata – Matariki, a Remembrance (1970s – 1990s). The exhibition includes new portraits of kuia and kaumātua and of others who have passed on. It’s an opportunity to remember those gathered up and returned in the season of Matariki.
Sunday 16 June | The Artery, Historic Village
Treat yourself to a creative Sunday with two workshops at The Artery: learn how to extract flax fibres to weaves cloaks and piupiu, and craft your own toys out of harakeke. While you’re in the Historic Village, make the most of the gorgeous second-hand clothing stores at your disposal, and support slow, sustainable fashion.
Tuesday 18 June – Thursday 20 June | Whareroa Marae | Tauranga City Library
Break up your week and pop over the bridge to Whareroa Marae, nestled by the water opposite the city centre, where you’ll find local iwi Ngai Te Rangi taking guided tours through their exhibition Mataraunui: Tohu O Te Kura (Remnants of a Treasured Past). It’s an initiative that acknowledges the footsteps of the iwi’s tīpuna as they made their way from Ōpōtiki to Tauranga, and one that commemorates the hard work of the kaumātua in their dedication to the iwi.
On Wednesday, head to the Tauranga City Library for a research workshop where you’ll discover just how to take a deep dive into your own whakapapa, explore the Māori reference collections, and learn all about your iwi history in Tauranga Moana – and more!
If you’re at the marae on Thursday, take part in the workshop on taonga conservation with Matua Dean Flavell. He’ll teach you how to take care of and restore your precious taonga at home and at the marae. The workshop will focus on tangible taonga: whāriki (woven mats) and clothing made of harakeke/feathers, wooden carvings, and portraits/books.
Saturday 22 June | Tauranga Art Gallery | The Artery, Historic Village
Your weekend begins with three phenomenal Matariki exhibitions opening at Tauranga Art Gallery, by Louise Potiki Bryant and Santee Smith, Lewis Tamihana Gardiner, and Kapua Joy Bennett. They’ll be exhibiting until October, so there’s plenty of time to explore.
And the creativity continues with two more Artery workshops: weave a bracelet or basket out of harakeke, or make your very own poi – koha appreciated! Check out all the workshops happening at The Artery over Matariki here.
And for the kids…
Tuesday 18 June – Thursday 20 June | Libraries
Our libraries are holding Matariki story-telling sessions for children!
On Tuesday 18 June, author Rebecca Larsen will be at the Tauranga City Library with her book, Twinkle Twinkle Matariki. Bring the littlies and help Aroha sing along to the Matariki-themed waiata!
The same evening, the older kids can enjoy dressing up in their PJs and heading to Tauranga Library for a magical evening of story-telling: discover the secrets of the stolen stars of Matariki (with milo and marshmallows!), and end the night with some fun Matariki-themed activities.
The next day, the talented storytellers from Te Reo Wainene o Tua are coming to Pāpāmoa Library. Come along for a te Reo Māori kaupapa, revitalising pūrākau (writing), reviving oral traditions and normalising te Reo Māori.
There are story-telling sessions at the Mount Maunganui and Greerton libraries too – check them out here!
Sunday 23 June | The Artery, Historic Village
Local artist Arohanoa Mathews will be running a free children’s art workshop on Sunday at the Artery – come along and discover what Matariki means to you. The taonga you create will be yours to keep: learn how to use art to express yourself, while exploring the stories of Matariki at the same time.
Saturday 29 June | The Artery, Historic Village
The following Saturday, Kalena Egan will be taking a workshop for children using natural materials collected locally to create something special to take home. Set your imagination free in this resourceful and explorative workshop! Koha appreciated.