Kauri Camouflage

by Natalie Robertson

The Kauri Project Poster Series (2014)
archival print, edition of 50
420 x 594 mm
unframed - $230
framed with white wooden frame - $420


The phrase ‘Kauri Ki Uta, Kauri Ki Tai,’ was gifted to The Kauri Project by Te Roroa artist Will Ngakuru, a call for kauri to once more clothe the landscape from mountain to sea. The photograph depicts the classic kauri bark ‘camouflage’ pattern, taken from a tree on Kohu Rd, Titirangi, overlaid with the shadow of a recently dead kauri on nearby Tanekaha St. Kauri dieback spores are unseen, spreading hidden within the soil. The dead kauri foreshadows what lies ahead if we can’t halt that spread.

Born in Kawerau, New Zealand, Natalie Robertson (Ngati Porou, Clan Donnachaidh) makes photographic and moving image works that explore Māori knowledge practices and cultural landscapes. Her practice engages with conflicting settler and indigenous relationships to land and place. She has exhibited extensively throughout New Zealand and internationally. Robertson is also a founding member of the Auckland-based collective Local Time, which facilitates site-specific projects that speak to local and indigenous contexts. 

The Kauri Project: Poster Series Contemporary artists and designers Charlotte Graham, Philip Kelly, Tessa Laird, Natalie Robertson and Haruhiko Sameshima have been commissioned to produce new works addressing the social, cultural and historical value of the kauri tree, one of our most beloved native species, in the face of the threat posed by kauri dieback disease.


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