Cultural bridging, art-science and Aotearoa New Zealand | Intellect Skip to content
1981
Volume 10, Issue 1
  • ISSN: 1477-965X
  • E-ISSN: 1758-9533

Abstract

The project ‘Te Kore Rongo Hungaora’/‘Uncontainable Second Nature’ is predicated on a bridge between Māori and European cultures. Based on this view, works from art and science were re-contextualized as cultural texts symbolic of belief systems. The project was conceived and curated for exhibitions in Istanbul and Rio de Janeiro. Discipline was not viewed as fixed, but fluid in a transformational environment. Five themes were selected from within European and Māori world-views: cosmological context, all is energy, life emerged from water, anthropic principle and integrated systems. The selected works addressed more than one of these thematic regions. While aspects of thinking might be shared across a cultural boundary, the agreement is only at the level of summary of view, rather than at the level of detail. This distinction is important in moving human thinking forward to an integrated condition particularly where negotiating hybridity is concerned. Certainly knowledge is advanced in a sense, and cultural bridging can be observed in practice at several New Zealand organizations such as the National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research, the Institute of Geological and Nuclear Sciences and the Department of Conservation which all employ staff whose position entails observance and care of Māori perspectives on subjects under investigation and study. The connection between the work of Kaumatua (elder) Dr Te Huirangi Waikerepuru and Zoologist Mike Paulin in the exhibitions was semantic rather than computational. Here the function of metaphor in uniting what were previously considered divergent world-views becomes apparent. Myth is often reported as distinctive to a specific culture, however, considering interconnections ignites a more expansive view of culture and consciousness.

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2012-05-17
2024-05-27
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