Past event

17 August to 18 August 2022

He aha rā te hinengaro? Wānanga with Heidi Brickell and Gabriel Tongaawhikau

Image: Heidi Brickell, PAKANGA FOR THE LOSTGIRL (detail), 2021. Photo by Emily Parr.

Image: Heidi Brickell, PAKANGA FOR THE LOSTGIRL (detail), 2021. Photo by Emily Parr.

17 August to 18 August 2022. Free entry.

To register, please email

On Wednesday 17 and Thursday 18 August two wānanga sessions will be held in the context of Heidi Brickell's exhibition PAKANGA FOR THE LOSTGIRL, at The Physics Room. These wānanga are intended as a space to make, learn about and discuss key ideas in Brickell's project, centred on the hinengaro or mind-heart continuum, in relation to creative practice. 

The sessions will be facilitated by the artist and by Gabriel Tongaawhikau, colleagues and friends whose extended exploration of the layers between personal and political, with regards to mātauranga, have become a vital space into which they want to welcome others.

1-3pm, Wednesday 17 August 
The first hour of this session will be spent making rākau forms drawing on those seen in Brickell's work. The second hour will involve using these rākau we've made to learn key kupu (words) and whakaaro (concepts) Māori that have arisen or been significant in the artist's research, and discuss these. This session is open to all, and particularly intended for those with a creative research practice and an interest in learning about some te reo Māori terms and related ideas in more depth. 

1-3pm, Thursday 18 August
This session will be held in te reo Māori, with a focus on the kupu 'hinengaro', and ideas relating to creativity and making held within this kupu. It will draw on pūrākau, wetereo and personal journeys to explore the question of ‘He aha rā te hinengaro?’. This session is designed for those with an intermediate level of te reo Māori, with an interest in language and creativity. 

Following these sessions, at 5.30pm on Thursday 18 August, we will hold a celebration of the exhibition with kai and refreshments: all welcome.


Heidi Brickell (Te Hika o Papauma, Ngāti Apakura, Ngāti Kahungunu, Rangitāne, Rongomaiwahine) lives and works in Tāmaki Makaurau. Recent solo exhibitions include Alluvial Hours at Laree Payne Gallery, Kirikiriroa (2021), and Floundering Arms Swallowed by Pendent Whenua at Paludal, Ōtautahi (2021). She was also in Outgrowth alongside Salome Tanuvasa at Mother¿ (2020), and Nine Māori Painters at Tim Melville Gallery, both Tāmaki Makaurau (both 2020). Brickell was the 2021 recipient of the Molly Morpeth-Canaday Akel Award. In 2011 she graduated with a BFA from Elam School of Fine Arts, The University of Auckland.

He uri nō Taranaki me Ngā Puhi, Gabriel Tongaawhikau has a background in Māori studies and law. He is a learning specialist in mātauranga Māori at Tāmaki Paenga Hira Auckland Museum, where he delivers programmes for tamariki and professional development for adults. Gabriel has worked and volunteered for his hapū, marae and other kaupapa including health, education and correctional facilities at Auckland Women’s Prison, Mt Eden Men’s Prison, Ember mental health services and Manurewa West Primary School. He has been involved in kapa haka since childhood, performing in regional competitions with his whānau kapa haka rōpū, Tūtū Kā’ika, and at Te Matatini. He is an advocate for te reo Māori me ōna tikanga.