Spatial Design at AUT

School of Art + Design, AUT University, Auckland, NZ

Māori + Oceanic Space Research Cluster

As any notions of space that go beyond containment at a specific location, Māori and Pacific concepts and experiences of space co-extend through time, defying technological and historical distinctions, and spanning sacred, functional, local and international domains.

This research cluster examines a potential for thinking of time-space “between”, where “time takes on flesh”, and “space becomes charged” (Bakhtin). Considering how Pacific perspectives on whenua, moana and tangata (relationships between land, sea and people) can give rise to architectures of stability and liquidity, you will explore ways of conceptualizing, performing and experiencing cultural identities and constructions of space. In the process, you may address aspects such as: neo/post/colonial moments and histories; archival strategies and modes of enactment; urban/rural or regional/global fields of consciousness; dislocation, migrancy and exile; singular and plural identities; iconicity and performance of identities; tradition and contemporary practice; survival and authenticity; indigenous buildings, global official culture and economic systems.

Your research will expand your own understanding of thresholds between cultural worlds and help you negotiate inter-cultural and inter-disciplinary boundaries. Māori and Pacific traditions of thinking, building and dwelling, that are relevant to contemporary practice and theory, will inform your engagement with spatial relationships. Collaboration with peers and different communities will exploit different knowledge systems and languages. Research, making and design in this spatial context result from a series of negotiations, and a navigating between different spaces and people.

Māori and Oceanic Space Cluster Staff: Tina Engels-SchwarzpaulFleur PalmerAlbert Refiti