Toi Poutama is an exhibition of Māori weaving and carving completed by graduates from Whitireia NZ, 2013. On display are woven kākahu (cloaks) and piupiu (waist or shoulder garments), tukutuku (lattice panels), and a range of wood carving such as wakahuia (treasure box), hoe (canoe paddle), kōruru (carved face), and weaponry.
Ancient art forms have been extensively researched by these students during 2013, and using customary techniques, methods and design concepts, they have incorporated their own artistic expression to produce these art works for this special collection. What also makes this work special is the use of indigenous materials such as harakeke (flax), pingao (a sand sedge), kākaho (a reed) and a variety of native woods that have been carefully selected, sourced and prepared.
The exhibition title Toi Poutama takes its name from a new weaving and carving degree that is being offered by Whitireia NZ for the first time in 2014. Toi means art, and Poutama is a popular design used within toi to represent mātauranga or the acquisition of knowledge and life-long learning.