23 Apr 2022

Matthew Galloway: why take phosphate from the Western Sahara?

From Saturday Morning, 11:05 am on 23 April 2022
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Photo: Supplied

From his house on Otago Harbour, designer and artist Matthew Galloway sees the same view every evening as the sun sets: a plume of smoke rising from the chimney of the Ravensdown Factory. 

The factory processes phosphate rock into fertiliser for our farms, but to make this product New Zealand imports the phosphate from occupied Western Sahara. Galloway says by purchasing it we are helping fund Morocco’s brutal occupation of this territory.

The view from Galloway’s window is featuring in his installation Endless with Sahrawi artist Mohamed Sleiman Labat, at Te Tuhi Auckland until May 8.

Matthew Galloway and Mohamed Sleiman Labat's installation Endless at Te Tuhi.

Semi-opaque flags hung over the windows of Te Tuhi look to recreate Galloway's evening view.  Photo: Sam Hartnett