Paramount Wellington

By: Paramount  05-Apr-2012

  • Rated: E
  • Running Length:1hr 24mins
  • Cast:Hekenukumai Busby, Dr, Steven Engelsman, Robert Gabel, Garry Nicholas

Session Times

"Don't crash it", jokes Chappy Harrison as he hands over captaincy to Koos Wabeke, the young Dutchman who will guide a beautiful new waka taua down Dutch canals. The waka, Te Hono ki Aotearoa, was commissioned by the Museum Volkenkunde in Leiden, as was this lively film describing its creation – and the dedication of all involved to avoiding crashes of the inter-cultural kind. Dutch immersion in kaupapa waka begins propitiously in museum director Steven Engelsman's desire to get it right and in the affinity he strikes with the master carver Hekenukumai Busby. Given a front row seat from the earliest negotiations through to the handing over, filmmaker Jan Bieringa is alert to the different ways in which so many men on the project, young and old, Maori and Dutch, inhabit the rituals that invest meaning in the work. With all due tact and admiration she marks the generation of something deeply stirring: a taonga destined never to return but to make Aotearoa manifest on European waters.