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Vertigo Sea

Vertigo Sea

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  • Wed 3 Aug ’16, 10:00am – 5:00pm
  • Thu 4 Aug ’16, 10:00am – 5:00pm
  • Fri 5 Aug ’16, 10:00am – 5:00pm
  • Sat 6 Aug ’16, 10:00am – 5:00pm
  • Sun 7 Aug ’16, 10:00am – 4:00pm
  • View all sessions


CoCA - Toi Moroki Centre of Contemporary Art , 66 Gloucester Street, Christchurch


All Ages

Ticket Information:

  • Free Admission


Official Website

Christchurch's Centre of Contemporary Art (CoCA) Toi Moroki gallery is one of only two places in the Southern Hemisphere and the only New Zealand venue to host British international artist and filmmaker, John Akomfrah's mesmerising work 'Vertigo Sea'.

'Vertigo Sea' presents a chance to see cutting edge work commissioned for the 2015 Venice Biennale, where international art magazine 'Art Review' called the three-screen video installation, a 'stand out'.

'Vertigo Sea' merges documentary and Akomfrah's own footage in a 48-min long exploration of the sea's integral role in the troubled histories of slavery and whaling.

It fuses archival material, readings from classical sources, and newly shot footage, to explicitly highlight the greed, horror and cruelty of the whaling industry, and juxtaposes it with scenes of the many generations of migrants and refugees making crossings of the ocean for a better life.

It explores a view in which global man is placed in the service of the sea, and delivers a strong reminder about issues around global migration, the refugee crisis, slavery and ecological concerns.

'Vertigo Sea' was shot on the Isle of Skye, the Faroe Islands and northern regions of Norway.

Showing at CoCA concurrently with ‘Vertigo Sea’ will be the work of artist, Bridget Reweti (Ngāti Ranginui, Ngāi Te Rangi). Bridget Reweti’s is a young Māori artist who explores customary Māori concepts from a contemporary perspective.

Her exhibition Tirohanga is tied specifically to the land of Aotearoa New Zealand. It takes the narratives of Bridget’s iwi at Tauranga Moana as a starting point, to explore our understanding of the land and landscape.

Her films challenge the idea of the wild, untamed, sublime landscape, as first told by the 18th century European migrants, offering an alternate perspective from Te Ao Māori through its quiet observation.

Exhibition Sponsor Rawlinsons

For more information about the exhibition, artists, a guide to the artwork and events programme visit our website.

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