Following the Canterbury earthquakes, artist Riki Manuel created Te Waka Whaka Hou The Canoe of the Rebuild.
Made from the city’s earthquake rubble and demolition material, this Waka symbolises ‘us’ the people of Ōtautahi, moving forward from the damage caused by Rūamoko in the Christchurch earthquakes.
Created on site and gifted to Te Matatiki Toi Ora The Arts Centre by Riki, the rear of the Waka exposes evidence of the earthquake’s violence, with a break in a veranda pole, highlighting the immense force Rūamoko created. In contrast, the two beautiful carvings at the front signify the challenges of moving forward into the future.
This work was created and funded through Gap Filler (via The Todd Foundation) in 2012 when a group of local Māori and Pacific artists formed Arts Waka and created and presented artworks in Market Square. The work has been in storage since its first exhibition, and it is with great excitement that Te Matatiki Toi Ora is able to show it off again for us all to enjoy.