1936 – 2017
Master Carver, Printmaker
Cliff Whiting was born in 1936 as a member of the Maori Whanau-a-Apanui tribe and grew up in the rural community of Te Kaha in New Zealand. He was a highly respected woodcarver, painter and teacher, and was made a member of the prestigious Order of New Zealand.
Cliff had strong Maori beliefs and worked closely with many Maori communities. His belief in the significance and importance of the wharenui (Maori meeting houses) in everyday life led him to help restore historic carved wharenui as well as other marae buildings. He believed that the marae contributes to maintaining and revitalising Maori arts and culture.
Cliff’s most recent works are a series of lino carvings which explore his own experience diving and gathering seafood, and some larger panels illustrating incidents in the story of Hatupatu (an ancestor of the Maori Arawa tribe).