Hongi – The breath of life, Millo’s new work in Whangarei

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11 February 2019

In the work "Hongi - The breath of life" in Whangarei, street artist Millo portrays the traditional Maori greeting. Find out what it is!

A few days away from Future, Millo‘s mural that brought art into the shantytowns, artist published on his Instagram profile a photo of Hongi – The breath of life, the latest work done at Whangarei in New Zealand. In his mural we see a boy and a girl brush at the same time with nose and forehead: it’s Hongi, the traditional greeting of Maori.

During the greeting, the breath of life (in the local language called “ha”) is exchanged and mixed, becoming something more than a simple formal gesture, or a symbol of spiritual sharing on both protagonists souls. As Millo explains on Instagram:

“Through the exchange of this physical greeting, one is no longer considered “manuhiri” visitor, but rather “tangata whenua”, one of the people of the land”.

The work expresses very well the concept of exchange, strengthened by the blue trail that embraces the two protagonists who don’t see the surrounding world and even their respective bodies but feel the soul of the other merge into something bigger.

Hongi - The breath of life, la nuova opera di Millo a Whangarei | Collater.al Hongi - The breath of life, la nuova opera di Millo a Whangarei | Collater.al

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