Māorifuturism: The Digital, the Speculative and the Future
Māori culture now finds itself at the beginning of a digital age, where digital technologies enable information to be circulated, uploaded and downloaded within a globally networked society, allowing indigenous cultures to be preserved. Statistically, in 80-100 years’ time, Māori culture is in danger of becoming a diluted society, where its language, values and traditions are at risk of being misplaced within a Western society. Thus, this thesis aims to preserve Māori culture for the future. The imminent question therefore is; how can we envisage a speculative future context where digital technology and culture develop the future of Māori architecture?
Māorifuturism is an intersection of culture, technology and the future. It will explore new territories of possible futures or alternate realities for Māori culture through speculative narratives, considering mysticism, metaphysics, identity and liberation. Māorifuturism blends the future, the past and the present to create an emergent context.
This thesis will present a highly speculative future scenario, where a novel architecture for Māori is envisaged. The design project will aim to visualise a new cultural urban condition, indigenous to Aotearoa and distinctive to Tukorehe iwi.
Working in direct conjunction with Ngāti Tukorehe Iwi (my personal iwi), this emergent project is sited within the tribal landscapes of Te Whare Tapu o Tukorehe. This thesis initiates dialogue to investigate how progressive digital technologies and the cultural identity and Mātauranga Māori (cultural knowledge) of Ngāti Tukorehe can be amalgamated to develop Māori culture and architecture within a speculative scenario.