Notes

Whakahoki kōrero! Have your say!

Whakahoki kōrero! Have your say!

Christchurch City Council has just begun consultation on proposed changes to the city’s Long Term Plan. These will affect the levels of service we provide to you, more specifically our opening hours, what we can offer to school children and the programme of events and activities we put on for the visiting public.

Please follow the links below to find out more and have your say on the proposals.

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Hand on My Chest

Hand on My Chest

The Chembo Family
Zambian/New Zealanders

Hand on My Chest
Composed July 2018 – September 2019
For spoken voice/s, 4 mins

In this anthem, the Chembo family calls us to consider the histories that our many cultural understandings are built upon, and issues of race, class and gender – what are the costs of belonging? What is it that we feel we belong to? And in acknowledging individual and collective pasts, how might we build a better world? This performance eschews melody and song, letting the lyric/text and voice ring out powerfully on its own.

Take some time to try and speak the Chembos’ anthem aloud.

Life is Good

Life is Good

The Faulalo/Bull family
Samoan/Pākehā/New Zealanders

Life is Good
Composed February – July 2019
For 6-part unaccompanied voice, 3 mins 50 sec

The Faulalo/Bull family anthem sings of the excitement and vitality found in modern family life. Throughout the piece we hear a repeated rhythmic pulse of culture and praise “Malie le olaga, le olaga malie!” (Samoan for “life is good, how good life is!”). Alongside this pulse, a lively family chorus sings of routines, values, hopes and the cultural roots of the family tree. This involves a negotiation of many musical ideas. Unison, harmony and polyphony embody the busyness of young family life, with each family member contributing their own lyrics and ideas to the mix.

While this anthem is specific and important to the Faulalo/Bull family, they sing of themes familiar to many of us. Ideas of gratitude and participation, the sense of belonging that arises from being active community members, the spirit of hard work and practice, and sense of home that is formed through the feeling connected to each other and to family ancestry.

New Zealand, Our Home

New Zealand, Our Home

The Samson-Godinez family
Filipino/New Zealanders

New Zealand, Our Home
Composed July 2018 – September 2019
For voice and piano/organ or other instrumentation, 1 min 30 sec

‘God Defend New Zealand’ began as a Christian hymn, becoming New Zealand’s second national anthem in 1977. The Samson-Godinez family favour the idea of an anthem as a hymn – an uplifting song of thanksgiving and praise that sings of values and beliefs. The traditional style of this new composition echoes a community-oriented time; an inherently social music that comes to life when sung by a group or a family.

Their new song 'New Zealand, Our Home' is about some of the qualities of Aotearoa New Zealand that form a unique sense of identity and home. Their anthem begins by noting characteristics often identified with New Zealanders: loyalty, friendliness, familiarity, and an easy-going nature. The final two verses pair the beauty of the land with the wild and brutal forces of nature that can unexpectedly shift the earth beneath our feet, stirring a nation into action.

Tangin Bwanaan Tebetebeke

Tangin Bwanaan Tebetebeke

Ana utu Tiibin (the Tiibin family)
Kiribati/New Zealanders

Tangin Bwanaan Tebetebeke
(Voices from the Pacific Ocean)
Composed July 2018 – September 2019
For 5-part voice and guitar, 5 mins 40 sec

The Tiibins’ anthem considers the reality and possibility of having multiple homes and homelands. Their sense of belonging spans and connects two countries within the vast Pacific Ocean – Aotearoa New Zealand and Kiribati (pronounced “Kiribas”). The bond the Tiibins sing of is strong but fragile. Kiribati is one of earth’s most vulnerable countries with regard to the climate crisis. Rising seas imminently threaten to engulf the low-lying island nation, where the average elevation of the expansive archipelago is 1.8m above sea level. Already, waves wash right over low-lying parts of the land at high tide. Even if bold action was taken today, the fate of Kiribati is dire – within our lifetime most of the nation will be uninhabitable, swallowed by the rising sea.

Facing the realities of this climate emergency head on through song, the Tiibin family ask a profound question: how can a nation of people live on without physical land to rest their feet? How can culture, language and traditions survive and prosper when spread across many countries?

Dorian Alleluias

Dorian Alleluias

The Vissers Webb family
Dutch/Pākehā/New Zealanders 

Dorian Alleluias
Composed April – September 2019
For variations of voices including instrumental-voice,
3 mins 10 sec (variable)

At the heart of this song is the question of how we each live out the values we uphold. Are our actions and relationships with others, and our world, honest to our beliefs? For the Vissers Webb family (the artist’s own family), these ideas can be found in small actions of family love as much as is in larger actions or socio-political movements. This anthem is improvised around the musical mode/scale called Dorian. Each rendition differs from the last, though the lyrics and mood of the piece remain consistent (just one rendition of the multiple recordings made is shown in this exhibition). The family chose this composition format for its links to jazz improvisation as well early Western vocal ornamentation. But most importantly, they chose this form of music making because it demands listening carefully to what others are doing and saying. Careful listening like this requires good teamwork and a heartfelt interest in ensuring each voice is heard, which can mean putting the needs of others before your own. Their anthem is a song of thanksgiving and appreciation for those people who hold us to account, who challenge and question, who encourage, and who love unconditionally.

Personal, powerful Anthems of Belonging ring out at Christchurch Art Gallery

Personal, powerful Anthems of Belonging ring out at Christchurch Art Gallery

Get a glimpse into what five New Zealand families with a wide range of cultural and ancestral connections feel about place and belonging in Aotearoa.

Remember Bill Hammond

Remember Bill Hammond

Director Blair Jackson and all of us here at Christchurch Art Gallery Te Puna o Waiwhetū invite you to join Bill Hammond’s family and friends at the Gallery on Friday evening to remember Bill and acknowledge his passing. As one of Aotearoa New Zealand’s most respected artists, Bill leaves behind a superb legacy – an incredible body of work that will continue to be enjoyed for generations to come.

Come along, raise a glass and help us celebrate the accomplishments of one of Canterbury’s finest.

 

Friday 5 February, 5–7pm

Bayleys Knight Frank Foyer

Christchurch Art Gallery Te Puna o Waiwhetū

RIP Bill

RIP Bill

All of us at Christchurch Art Gallery Te Puna o Waiwhetū were very saddened to hear of the death of Bill Hammond over the weekend. Bill’s contribution to the art of Aotearoa New Zealand was original and unforgettable and he occupied a special, beloved place within the arts communities of Christchurch and Lyttelton.

Let Time Unfold at Christchurch Art Gallery this Summer

Let Time Unfold at Christchurch Art Gallery this Summer

Take a trip through time this summer with some of Christchurch Art Gallery Te Puna o Whaihetū’s must-see treasures – works of art dating from Greek and Roman antiquity to the present – when As Time Unfolds opens on Saturday 5 December.

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