26 May 2024

Arts news: Poppy at Cannes, Goths on stage & Māori climate action in paint

From Culture 101, 3:00 pm on 26 May 2024
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Photo: supplied

Kāpiti director Linda Niccol’s 2021 film Poppy has won the Cannes Ecrans Seniors competition at an annual competitive film screening organised by the city and the Cannes Seniors Club, during this year’s Cannes Film Festival.

Poppy received a trophy from a jury of cinephiles headed by French director Emmanuelle Dubergey.

Poppy is the story of a young woman with Down syndrome who refuses to be defined by disability and determines to pursue her dream to be a motor mechanic.

The film is screening on TVNZ+ and Arovision.

A painting of a prominent Māori climate activist Tuhi-Ao Bailey by Maryanne Shearman from Taranaki has won the 2024 Adam Portraiture Award with a $20,000 cash prize.

‘Tuhi-Ao’- an oil painting on canvas was chosen as the winner from a record breaking 451 entries and 37 finalists at the New Zealand Portrait Gallery Te Pūkenga Whakaata on Wednesday.

Lead Curator at Christchurch Art Gallery, Felicity Milburn, worked alongside Wellington painter Karl Maughan to select the winners and says that they “saw much more than just exceptional realism in this striking work”, noting it as a brilliant piece of painting. 

The Adam Portraiture Award exhibition will run at the New Zealand Portrait Gallery on Wellington’s waterfront until 11 August and will then tour nationally. 

A huia bird feather has become the most expensive feather in the world, selling for more than $46,000 at a Webb’s auction in Auckland. It had been expected to fetch up to $3,000. 

The feather weighs roughly 9 grams, making it vastly more valuable than gold.

The last confirmed sighting of a huia was in 1907. The birds were sacred to Māori and are registered as a taonga tūturu (or authentic treasure) with the Ministry for Culture and Heritage. This means only a registered “taonga tūturu” collector can buy the feather, and the feather cannot leave Aotearoa New Zealand without permission.

Elvis’s granddaughter, actress Riley Keough, had filed a lawsuit seeking to stop what her lawyers say is a fraudulent auction of her family home, Gracelands. 

A temporary injunction has been put in place preventing the property from going to auction. 

In this bizarre case, an effort to auction the home has been claimed as fraudulent. The sale was to be made by a company claiming that Lisa Marie Presley — Elvis Presley’s daughter — had borrowed $3.8 million and put Graceland up as collateral before she died in 2023. 

Riley Keough claims her mother’s apparent signatures on a Standard Promissory Note and deed of trust are forged.

This week Flight of the Conchords’ member Jermaine Clements premiered his new musical duo Goth 2 A Flame with What We Do in the Shadows co-star Jonny Brugh in a sellout season at the small Poneke Wellington theatre that first housed them, BATS. 

Goth 2 A Flame is “New Zealand’s darkest goth band”, made up of Martin AKA Clown of Thornz and Richard Nothing, two self-serious, angsty goths from Ōtepoti Dunedin. 

Yet while a Spinoff review of the duo’s set of songs suggest Clements has lost none of his genius, opening night was reportedly something of a disaster that even being mock-bad couldn’t save. 

Instruments got caught in giant wigs and mesh tops, there were  numerous technical issues and delays. With all that out of the way, reports in this weekend are of the show flying. Surely success is now inevitably around the corner. 

Finally, a drum n bass-beat based song by a group of children in Ireland is being hailed as the song of the summer in Ireland. The song has already amassed 8.6million views, through a video made with a shoestring budget 

The Spark was created by Rhyme Island, a youth rap project based at Kabin Studio, a non-profit at Knocknaheeny, a suburb of Cork, in collaboration with Creative Ireland, a government initiative. 

The song features about 30 children - aged nine to 12 plus a group who live in refugee accommodation in Lisdoonvarna, County Clare.