Wai Ching Chan

Wai Ching Chan uses Chinese knots as her language to express the need to reconstruct and reinforce the connections and unity that exists between tauiwi and tangata whenua in Aotearoa. The knots come together like the lyrics to a song and together they make up a bridge that lead us to something important.

The Button knot: holding what was separated together, mostly holding together a connection that’s meant to be made. Whakawhanaungatanga, kotahitanga, manaakitanga, aroha.

The ‘Caisson’ knot: establishing a connection to the ‘world’ and between us. Kaitiakitanga.

The Endless knot: Typically seen as the ‘good luck knot’; ultimate, eternal blessings, friendship and connection. Whakawhanaungatanga, kotahitanga, manaakitanga, aroha.

“一枝竹仔會易折彎 幾枝竹一扎段折難”

Ki te kotahi te kākaho, ka whati, engari ki te kāpiua e kore e whati.

A well-known children’s song 一枝竹仔 (a bamboo stick) has a shared meaning with the whakataukī above. It’s become my motto. The same idea for unity and teamwork is known in a different name. The song ends with the line:

“齊共同力無猜忌 一切都好順利 好!”
“Walk together hand in hand (despite differences and prejudices), everything will work out smoothly, yes!”