Te Karaka Magazine

Te Karaka Magazine is published quarterly in New Zealand with feature articles about Ngāi Tahu tribal members and their accomplishments locally, and globally. 

A Good Egg

There’s a party at the New Zealand Consul-General’s home in Los Angeles, and Rachel House is looking for people she knows. “Let’s hang out with those Māori over there,” she says. Since I can’t see who she’s talking about it’s not until I’m practically walking into Rena Owen, Keisha Castle-Hughes and Cliff Curtis that I appreciate the setup. “Kaua e whakamā,” she says with a smile, waving me forward for introductions. Cliff gives me a quick kiss on the cheek and Rena reaches out to touch the pounamu Dad gave me. Keisha is friendly and funny, and talks with her hands. She tells me how Rachel has been integral to every career decision she’s made since they met on the set of Whale Rider. Later in the evening it looks like Keisha is saying this again, because I watch Rachel clasp her hands with the tenderness of someone who has just caught a bird. I suspect Rachel has a hard time hearing her praises sung.

Double Oscar Winner

In the language of scriptwriters, the term “story arc” refers to a central theme that unfolds within each episode or scene. For Ngāi Tahu sound mixer and recordist Hammond Peek, the story arc of his life and career can be summed up in a word: whānau. The two-time Oscar winner talks to kaituhi Ila Couch about a career that has taken him all the way to Hollywood, but has always led back home. When you visit the home of an Oscar winner the first thing you look for is their award, or, in the case

Oval Ball Travels

Rugby has taken Tamaha MacDonald from Blenheim to Mexico City, population 22 million. Kaituhituhi Ila Couch traveled to Mexico to discover how Tamaha has adapted to the language and culture of his new home. Tamaha MacDonald weaves through five lanes of traffic on his way to train Mexico’s national rugby team. “I refused to drive when I first got here, but my wife’s advice was drive flat out and give way to nobody,” he says. “It’s a bit of a free-for-all but you’ve got to get yourself in there

Atonement: Californian Tribe Dances For Salmon In Aotearoa

Roy Montgomery, Senior Lecturer of Environmental Management and Planning at the University of Canterbury, was carrying out research on the origins of the chinnok or quinalt salmon, introduced to South Island Rivers in the late 1800s. When he traced the salmon to a United States hatchery on the McCloud River he was able to identify the tribal area and reached out to the Winnemem Wintu via their website. "I was interested in who did, or didn't give permission for these eggs to be harvested and shipped" says Roy. "What I know about the Treaty of Waiting and New Zealand is that we would always ask the question who owned the fish or the river they came from, and I was wondering why no-one was asking where the fish came from in the United States."

Wreck Diver

It's easy to picture an archeologist at work, labouring under the hot sun, meticulously sifting soil and unearthing precious artifacts; but that's not how Tāne Renata Casserly works. With the same spirit of exploration as his tūpuna, Tāne dives to the bottom of lakes and oceans around North America to survey and document shipwrecks. Long before road and rail were developed to meet mass transportation demands, the Great Lakes were the superhighway of North America. However, safe passage was not always guaranteed, thanks to sudden storms, dense fog and human error. "We're exploring areas that haven't been seen since that ship went down because they are so deep and remote. It's so exciting to be there but it's also exciting to tell those stories to other people and share that experience."

The Big Idea

The Big Idea is an online hub for the New Zealand creative community. As a kiwi living and working in the United States I was invited to blog about my adventures in television and interview fellow creatives visiting New York City.

Brydee Rood in New York

This is the second time they’ve been to Pepe Giallo today. Eighteen thousand restaurants to choose from and Florian Habicht and Brydee Rood have declared this Italian joint worthy a re-visit. They order the pasta with zucchini, tomato, goat cheese and olives for $10, a cheap and tasty celebratory meal. The pair have just opened and closed their first exhibition at Chelsea’s P.P.O.W gallery as part of the Hostess Project aimed at enabling artists of all fields to present their work through one night events. Brydee, an Auckland born artist with a self-professed passion for waste, featured her work Quiet Bright - A Temporary Installation. Florian, New Zealand filmmaker and recent Harriet Friendlander Scholarship recipient, presented his short film Liebestraume.

Micro-organisms and Mark Twain at Mono Lake

Mono Lake is almost three times as alkaline as the sea, uninhabitable to fish and uninviting to human beings. When Mark Twain visited the lake in the 1870s he wrote in his travelogue Roughing It: "Once capsized, death would ensue in spite of the bravest swimming, for that venomous water would eat a man's eyes out like fire. " It is precisely because of Mono Lake's apparent inhospitality that Biogeochemists and Microbiologists set up camp to study bacteria known as extremophiles. Mono Lake bacteria are key to understanding how extremophiles could potentially exist and evolve into life forms on other planets.