Kereama Taepa

Kereama Taepa, WahARoa, 2022

Augmented Reality, digital/interactive experience accessed through Instagram using the QR code.

Kereama Taepa’s practice is centred on the overlap between traditional Māori art forms and knowledge with digital technologies and spaces. Working with media such as 3D printing and Virtual Reality, he fashions the digital landscape as an indigenous one, challenging the idea of the web being an anonymous space and history being erasable at the click of a button.

By scanning a QR code displayed at the entry to the ticketing marquee, visitors will be able to access Taepa’s latest work, WahARoa, a ‘carved’ gateway rendered using Augmented Reality. This follows the tikanga of a pōwhiri.

The work recreates the crucial moment of encounter at the threshold of the marae, where visitor and host alike acknowledge one another’s mana, exchange intentions, and call upon atua to witness the meeting.

WahARoa embodies a kaupapa of honouring and fostering connections between past, present, and future, and the physical and spiritual worlds, using familiar digital technologies to encourage visitors’ consideration of these things as they arrive at the island to start walking the sculpture trail.


Te Arawa, Te Āti Awa. Lives and works in Rotorua.

Kereama Taepa studied at Toioho ki Āpiti, Massey University in Palmerston North, earning Bachelor and Master qualifications in Māori Visual Arts and developing an interdisciplinary practice that spans large-scale public installation, audio, sculpture as well as streetwear.

Taepa belongs to a long history of Māori artists who engage with new media from an indigenous perspective, seeking out expressions of contemporary indigeneity and establishing indigenous spaces within contemporary media.

A solo exhibition of his work, ‘Transmission: Kereama Taepa’ from curator Ane Tonga was presented at Objectspace in 2020. Other notable projects include ‘Tohorā’, a large public sculpture commission in Paraparaumu’s Maclean Park and work presented in Toi Tu Toi Ora, the landmark survey of contemporary Māori art at Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki (2020/21).

Follow Kereama on Instagram @kereamataepa

Represented by Milford Galleries Queenstown milfordgalleries.co.nz