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Puha & Pakeha

 

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All works printed by the artist on Epson Velvet Fine Art Paper and K3 Archival Inks.

 

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This artwork is a prayer that we might remember to laugh at ourselves. When I was a child the song “Puha and Pakeha” was ubiquitous for some time. It was on TV and Radio constantly and the subject of much hilarity nation wide. They were simpler days I suppose. It seemed as though Maori and Pakeha were far more accepting of such subject matter. The song played alongside such other favorites as “My old mans a Dustman” and “Rambling Rose”. I borrowed much of this scary woman from some kids comic somewhere and “Maorified” her and found a couple of tasty Whites to excite her. This naughty Maori lady is all done up with blue mud on her cheeks and looking at the delicious little Pakeha treats as if she was staring through some confectionery window! The teeth tell the story that somewhere behind the fun, horror lies. This work opens up the subject of cannibalism for conversation in our country where it is a taboo subject these days because of PC attempts to spiritualise it. Preciousness about such subjects is tedious and I find the casual and hilarious attitude about it some Maori still have a relief and a delight.