Mahi Kara – Fun with Flags, 2017
flax leaves and nails
dimensions variable, activated 10–19 February 2017
Mahi Kara – Fun with Flags is a participatory artwork which doubles as a visual intervention in the Waiheke landscape and as a ‘pop-up’ interactive flag-making activity on the headland walkway.
Te Kara (the Colours) was the Māori name for the first New Zealand flag, also referred to as Kotahitanga (unity). Kara has become a generalised term for ‘flag’ along with haki (Jack). New Zealand flax (harakeke) is a well-known native plant that grows abundantly on Waiheke Island. Some early settlers referred to it as the ‘flag plant” because of its long green blades. Between 10 and 19 February visitors are invited to etch their own designs on flax and carry their personalised ‘flags’ along the headland and take them home.
Other Collaborators: Ngaire McCarthy and her team of volunteers donating and harvesting flax, Jan Robertson