New Zealand Flag Debate



Aotearoa Ensign


The Ghost Who Passed - Lester Hall



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The Split Enz anthem "Six Months in a Leaky Boat" created a cultural pivot about how a whole generation of Kiwis related to the term Aotearoa as an original name for our South Seas homeā€¦ while never the universal name for our group of islands it is what many now encourage as our true title.. even as a child I struggled to accept the second hand nature the prefix "New" creates in New Zealand and why is Zealand referenced anyway my young mind wondered.... My series of te reo ensigns began while curating the collection at the Duke in Kororareka/Russell. I also published a rough version of this ensign while the "flag debate" was raging. Red ensigns used to be given to iwi and hapu who were loyal to the crown and they would sew the iwi name to the field of the flag and fly them. This artwork celebrates the bicultural blend we see growing in all of us and flies the name proudly, AOTEAROA and promotes the two history idea of our duality, te reo and the Jack, a nod to history and treaty partners forging a future.

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