For this installation artist Karl Chitham has chosen to re-imagine a curious description found in a journal in the MOTH archives. The extract suggests that a wayward sailor established himself in a dense bush area of the Mangakahia Valley, Northland in the late 1840s. Calling himself Kingi, he set about building a series of unusual cliff top dwellings he referred to as the ‘estates’. Along with a rather dubious family history he also told local Maori that he had been sent by the Queen as the new monarch of New Zealand. Needless to say it is unlikely anyone took him seriously.
MOTH holds a number of significant collections in its archives. This project is perfectly placed to ‘negotiate the relatively unbroken ground of presenting the evidence of obscure antipodean lifestyles in all of their strange, confusing and fascinating splendor’. For more information visit http://museumoftruehistory.blogspot.co.nz/