By Vanya Steiner
New Zealand: Vanya Steiner. Edition of 30.
6.625 x 8.5"; 30 pages. Collage elements on pages 4 and 5. Red, white, and blue ribbons threaded into page 8. Printed on an inkjet printer. Text printed in script font on cream paper. Bound with brown textured paper over boards with handwritten text from the Treaty of Waitangi. Green, black and cream paper strips woven through the covers to form a design inspired by Maori Taniko weavings. Black end papers and pastedowns with woven paper strips from cover showing. Pages sewn into two sections representing the two halves of the Treaty house. Sections separated by cream and black Taniko pattern fold representing the ridgepole of the house. Laid in black card case with glossy color illustrations and title on spine. Designed and constructed by Vanya Steiner. Binding design by Elizabeth Steiner.
Vanya Steiner, Introduction: "This book addresses issues of bi-cultural design and the possibilities of two figures occupying the same space. It reuses and collages images from treaty documents, the Treaty house plans, and Maori and British illustrations from historical documents.
"The images, initially presumed to be either Maori or British, are revised in such a way that these clear distinctions become confused or entangled. The intention of this work is to always read the other into the images so that neither is finally able to exclude, contain or appropriate the other. In this way this work is caught up in issues of cultural property, ownership, and use, which I have described elsewhere as cultural (mis)appropriation.
"The book's case frames the book with the woodgraving of Totara and Oak, said to represent Maori and the British. The roman numerals are a reference to the markings found on the Treaty House's prefabricated frames, and the designs of Maori tukutuku (woven panels)."
Vanya Steiner is a member of the Department of Architecture, University of Auckland, Auckland, New Zealand.
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