Te aho tapu hou: The new sacred thread

The exhibition showcases distinctive garments created by Māori designer and fashion activist Jeanine Clarkin (Ngāti Hako, Ngāti Pāoa, Ngāti Ranginui, Ngāti Raukawa) over the last three decades.

From founding her first streetwear label in 1994 to dressing celebrities (such as Keisha Castle-Hughes and Cliff Curtis) for the red carpet, Clarkin’s Māori identity has been a common thread. Realising her childhood dream to be a designer, Clarkin’s creativity over the decades has resulted in her international status within the indigenous fashion community.

Clarkin’s mana-infused fashion continues to be seen on the racks at exclusive stores, worn on the street by younger generations, and experienced on the catwalks of Fashion Week events around the world. This mid-career retrospective brings it into the gallery space as a body of work mapping her early influences, significant milestones, and enduring passion for sustainable fashion.

Te aho tapu hou: The new sacred thread is curated by Maree Mills and toured by Waikato Museum Te Whare Taonga o Waikato.  

01 October - 20 November 2022

Photos 1-13 by Sam Hartnett

Photos 14-18 by Grant Triplow


Artist website

Artist interview

Jeanine Clarkin at New Zealand Fashion Week