Toioho ki Āpiti,
Māori Visual Arts

Join a unique community where te reo, tikanga and whanaungatanga are the keys to growing creative practices and processes in toi Māori.

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Choose a degree

Land of Tara, Courtenay Place lightboxes. Johnson Witehira. PhD.

Pātaka. Erena Arapere. MMVA.

Immerse yourself in the only university-based four year degree in Māori Visual Arts in Aotearoa and explore Māori visual culture encompassing customary and contemporary Māori art, language, culture and tikanga.

Noho marae 2018

Create work that is enriched by a deep understanding of culture in a programme that has its foundations in kaupapa Māori.

Reweti Arapere, Rangimatua, 2015, The Dowse Museum

Connect with indigenous artists, curators and galleries to help grow your career in the arts.

What can I study?

Toioho ki Āpiti Māori Visual Arts

Bachelor of Māori Visual Arts
Postgraduate Diploma in Māori Visual Arts
Master of Māori Visual Arts
Doctor of Philosophy

Be surrounded in a whānau atmosphere by inspiring people that are well-known contemporary artists, who can help you soar to new levels of creativity.

Develop your art practice in shared studio spaces, from painting and sculpture, to photography, moving image and installation.

Learn te reo Māori at the level that’s right for you.

Explore what it means to be Māori today.

Discover new ways of expressing yourself as an artist and push boundaries in contemporary art.

[Pāua to the People]. Terri Te Tau. PhD.

Pāua to the People. Terri Te Tau. PhD.

Puawai Taiapa-Aporo

BMVA
Graduated 2015

Puawai (Ngāti Porou, Te Whānau-a-Apanui, Ngāti Kauwhata, Rakahanga—Cook Islands) says her BMVA gave her the confidence to express herself.

“The amazing lecturers have open minds about different whakaaro, different types of work and you’re appreciated for your ideas. I wouldn’t be where I am today without the BMVA… the skills to express myself and the confidence and passion I’ve gained in my art and in where I come from, in my pepeha.”

“When I started I was really passionate about painting, but the course offers other art forms like photography and media studies. Over the years my passion changed as I started creating videos.”

Being able to develop her love of tikanga Māori was also a big draw for Puawai.

“Professor Bob Jahnke took us to a lot of different marae and I learned about the techniques our ancestors used in carvings and got to touch base on where we come from. I guess we’re the next generation to create something new.”

After graduating Puawai became one of the presenters on iconic youth TV show Pukana and has a growing online audience for her ‘Hey Puawai’ videos.

“I know my qualification has really set me on a strong path and I want to share that experience with others to empower them to give study a go and to dream bigger.”

Kereama

Kereama Taepa. MMVA.

Puawai Taiapa-Aporo

Puawai Taiapa-Aporo. BMVA.

What degree?

  • Bachelor of Māori Visual Arts—BMVA

    Be surrounded in a whānau atmosphere by inspiring people that are well-known contemporary artists, who can help you soar to new levels of creativity.

    Ideal if
    • You are interested in contemporary Māori art.
    • You are a school leaver or you’re starting a new career path.
    • You want a full immersive experience in Māori art.
    • You are of any cultural background—this programme is not limited to Māori students.
    Key information
    Duration
    Four years full-time study.
    Entry

    Selected entry—you'll need to show us a portfolio of your creative work, unless you have excellent secondary school results.

    Find out more about entry

    Location
    Manawatū (some courses are available by distance).
    Intakes
    February.
    Application
    Due 1 October (February start).
    Find out more
    Alt
  • Postgraduate Diploma in Māori Visual Arts—PGDipMVA

    Take your first step into advanced study in Māori art, and learn from leading Māori artists and researchers.

    Ideal if
    • You already have a Bachelors degree in art or have substantial experience and you need a qualification that can allow you to bridge the gap to higher postgraduate study.
    • You are of any cultural background (this programme is not limited to Māori students).
    Key information
    Duration
    One year full time, or part-time over a longer period.
    Entry

    Selected entry—you'll need to show us a portfolio of your creative work, unless you've completed the BMVA. Find out more about entry.

    Location
    Manawatū, or some courses are available by distance.
    Intakes
    February.
    Application
    Due 15 November (February start).
    Find out more
    Student drawing Star Wars design with Māori motifs
  • Master of Māori Visual Arts—MMVA

    Conduct purposeful, advanced, design research that connects with people well beyond the university.

    Ideal if
    • You already have an Honours degree and want to undertake an in-depth research project.
    • Or, you already hold a Postgraduate Diploma in art with at least a B average or equivalent.
    • Or, you are an international indigenous artist wanting to pursue advanced creative arts research.
    • You want to ground your practice in a kaupapa Māori framework.
    Key information
    Duration
    One year full time, or two years part time.
    Entry

    Selected entry—you'll need a BMVA or PGDipMVA, or to show evidence of other suitable experience or qualification. Find out more about entry.

    Location
    Manawatū, or some courses are available by distance.
    Intakes
    February.
    Application
    Due 15 November (February start).
    Find out more
    E Kau Ki Te Tai E, Israel Birch
  • Doctor of Philosophy—PhD

    Become the absolute top in your field by pursuing rigorous research, and pushing and challenging current knowledge. Contribute significantly to the understanding of a field of interest.

    Ideal if
    • You want to produce a sustained piece of advanced research work in a creative arts discipline. This could be a written thesis, or one comprised of creative practice research and a written component.
    • You have completed a postgraduate Bachelor (Honours) degree with first class or second class (division 1) honours, or a Master degree with first class or second class (division 1) honours in a relevant field. This qualification must also include a substantive (minimum 30 credits) research project, dissertation or thesis in which you have achieved a minimum grade of B+.
    Key information
    Duration
    Three to four years full time, or six years part time.
    Location
    Auckland, Wellington, Manawatū, or by distance within New Zealand.
    Find out more
    Collage text

Professor Robert (Bob) Jahnke ONZM

Bob Jahnke

Professor Robert Jahnke, Toioho ki Āpiti Māori Visual Arts
Ata exhibition at Pātaka Art + Museum, 2016
Photo: Mark Tantrum

Professor Robert Jahnke (Ngai Taharora, Te Whanau a Iritekura, Te Whanau a Rakairo o Ngati Porou) is an artist, writer and curator working principally as a sculptor, although trained as a designer and animator. In 1991 he established our Bachelor of Māori Visual Arts programme.

Considered one of New Zealand’s leading contemporary Māori artists, his practice straddles design, illustration, animation and sculpture, using a range of media including found objects, steel and lead, and more recently neon, mirrors and steel.

He has created major public works, including window and door designs for the Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa, wall reliefs for the High Court Building and Bowen House in Wellington, and the waharoa for the Sky Casino entrance in Auckland.

Of Samoan-German-Irish-Māori heritage, Professor Jahnke’s work explores political issues that face Māori people, the relationship between Māori and European colonisers and the impact of Christianity on Maori culture.

In 2016 he was appointed an Officer of the New Zealand Order of Merit for services to Māori art and education.

Turn your talents into a lifelong creative career.

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