Aroha

Indian black granite
200mm H x 300mm Dia. (ed.10, 1 A/P)

Series: X-Figure

Aroha, meaning ‘love’ in Māori, is a text message (x) and a ‘kiss’ that combines and connects. It responds to the environment, casting complex shadows and creating internal reflections. Like a stone marker, Aroha indicates the path ahead and anchors people in time and place. Made from igneous stone which was once magma at the Earth’s core, the sculpture’s minimalist form reprises early Palaeolithic cave drawings, primitive markings that record migrations of early humans across Continents and Oceans. An x-mark was used also by indigenous peoples as an insignia when signing treaties and legal deeds written in foreign languages, affecting lands, governance and rights. On Te Tiriti o Waitangi 1840 (Treaty of Waitangi), the x-signatures of rangatira (chiefs) convey a presence and power that transcends material worlds. This nation-making treaty was undercut by mixed motives and driven by love for ancestors, people and land. In Aroha the quill pen markings are expressed in ink-black stone, one line crossing another, inscribing the baseline axis (x) on a young nation’s geo-political map. Mathematical and sensual, Aroha adds up and multiplies to express the exponential power of love.