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Event 61

RALPH, A PORTRAIT: VINCENT O’SULLIVAN

Every biographical portrait is a singular take on its subject, and Ockham NZ Book Award shortlisted Ralph Hotere: The Dark Is Light Enough is writer Vincent O’Sullivan’s unique homage to his friend and fellow cultural traveller Ralph Hotere (Te Aupouri, Te Rarawa). Written at the invitation of the artist and crafted through personal conversations, as well as access to whānau and papers, the book outlines the remarkable story of the small boy, Hone Papita Raukura Hotere – born in the Hokianga in 1931 – who becomes Rau, then Ralph and, eventually, the stand-alone signature HOTERE. It is a loving but “incomplete” portrait, as O’Sullivan describes it, without visuals after a wrangle with the artist’s estate, and ending with the artist in his 70s when personal contact ceased. He shares his experiences of the man with Hannah August.

Supported by Heartland Bank.

Sat, 15 May 2021

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