Jeremy Leatinu’u

Earthpushers, 2017

soil, hessian bags, pallets, chair, signage and map
Activated 28 January–3 February 2017

Digging, shoveling, transporting and selling earth has been a human practice and business for along time. Even the great Māui talks about how his brothers were quick to carve the skin of the great fish into rough and jagged mountains and hillsides. Waiheke Island is woven into the history of this practice as sand and shingle were extracted from its beaches to build many of Auckland’s urban spaces, buildings, and road infrastructure, most notably the Grafton Bridge.

Earthpushers by Jeremy Leatinu’u is a seven day project that invites the public to help transport earth over water from one place to another, in this case from Auckland to Waiheke. The gesture of this action can be seen as a return of earth to the island as well as a time to reflect our own relationship and history with this natural material.

Jeremy Leatinu’u

Born 1984, Auckland
Lives and works in Auckland

Jeremy Leatinu’u works in performance art,​ public intervention,​ video and installation. Often working collaboratively and inviting participation he often explores the relationships between site specific performances and social situations. Leatinu’u is interested in ways to test, reveal and make connections between the properties and associated meanings of a place: its history, identity, governance or use, their relationship with each other and with the artist.

Leatinu’u holds a Postgraduate Diploma in Fine Arts from The University of Auckland. Selected recent exhibitions include: The Anthem Project, The Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa (2016); Imaginary Date Line a part Politics of Sharing, ifa Gallery, Berlin with Artspace Auckland (2016); EFL (Entry Fitness Level), Pacifique(s) Contemporain, PLOTHR Gallery, France (2015); Since 1984: He aha te ahurea-rua?, ST Paul St Gallery, AUT University Auckland (2015) and Primal Movements, Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki (2015).