Artist Profile: Will Ngakuru

Te Roroa, Te Rarawa, Ngapuhi

Carver / Sculptor

Will Ngakuru originates from the Hokianga, Far North and has been working within his community as an artist for over ten years. He also has over twenty years building experience – residential, commercial and rammed earth. Will is currently completing a Postgraduate Diploma of Fine Arts at Elam School of Fine Arts, Auckland University.

Will is passionate about Toi Maori and feels privileged that his journey has enabled him to create work using stories, styles, patterns, and forms relating to his own whanau, hapu and iwi. He is working towards a level of self-sufficiency that was known by his grandfather’s generation. Independence and closeness to nature defined time in a different way and allowed a quality and depth of artistic expression evident in early Maori art forms.

He has exhibited his work in a number of galleries and festivals throughout New Zealand. He participated at Piko – an international artists gathering in Hawaii and at the International Indigenous Arts Festival in Khabarovsk, Far Eastern Russia and the Solomon Islands.

“Living on the edge of an ancient Kauri forest provides me with an opportunity to explore the elemental relationships – interwoven strands of past, present, animate and inanimate. Increasing awareness of interconnectedness leads me to question, what constitutes independence?”