Apparently Maori are as special as Muhammad


The outrage started yesterday on Twitter and naturally it is now news, that some Maori are mortally offended by…shower curtains.

An American online store selling shower curtains depicting historic Māori is being called deplorable for the culturally inappropriate items.

Images of about 15 of Gottfried Lindauer portraits, including those of Māori leaders, are being sold as shower curtains for just under $100 by the Fine Art America website. Lindauer painted the detailed portraits of Māori in the late 19th and early 20th centuries.

Art historian Ngahuia Te Awekotuku, also a descendent of some of the Lindauer subjects, said Māori culture was being exploited, and it was appalling.

She said Māori images on teatowels and crockery were bad enough – but this was much worse.

“To actually see Wiremu Kingi as a shower person is absolutely extraordinary and profoundly hurtful. The arrogance of art producers in Western creators’ commerce never fails to amaze me.

“In traditional cultural terms, in the context of tikanga Māori of Māori values around the sanctity of the body and the intimacy of the bathroom, to have an ancestor as a shower curtain is profoundly insulting.”

The images include iwi leader Rewi Manga Maniapoto, and the Taranaki leader and chief of the Te Ati Awa Tribe, Wiremu Kingi Te Rangitake.

Oh piss off. How many Maori settlements or houses even had bathrooms back in the day? You are getting as bad as Islamists demanding no one can depict Muhammad.

A lawyer for three iwi in the Wai 262 Treaty claim over cultural and intellectual property rights, Maui Solomon, said the copyright for the Lindauer artworks had expired so there was nothing to stop the images being used in such an offensive way.

“This is why the original Wai 262 claimants to cultural and intellectual property rights claim brought to the Waitangi tribunal had asked for better recognition and protection of Māori cultural intellectual property,” he said.

“Because the intellectual property rights system doesn’t provide the sort of protection that would protect these images against culturally inappropriate misuse such as this one.”

Mr Solomon said that despite recommendations to set up a commission to help protect Māori cultural property the government had done nothing.

He said descendants of those depicted in the artwork should write to Fine Art America explaining that the images on the shower curtains are offensive and done without consultation with Māori.

Write as many letter as you like, you just sound like petulant whinging arseholes. There is no intellectual property issues here. Lindauer painted those and now he is dead and intellectual property rights expired years ago.

I think the shower curtains look awesome. This is all about trying to get some coin from someone else’s good idea. The sad thing is the arts community are a bunch of liberal elite luvvies so they will probably cave to the social justice warriors.


– RadioNZ



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  • Left Right Out

    I have a shower curtain with animals on it….. I’m expecting peta to be outraged now

  • biscuit barrel

    A line had been crossed with Susan Boyle shower curtains…now its open slather

    • Seriously?

      Now there is a marketing idea…

      We all know that guys pee in the shower (if anyone denies doing it they are probably the worst offender). Imagine a range of shower curtains with cartoon depictions of your favorite “love to hate” people on them. Target practice for the disaffected.

  • Seriously?

    That shower curtain is a crime against humanity – the ugliest thing I have seen for a while. What is next – a Mona Lisa bath towel? Nothing to do with cultural correctness, it is just a matter of good taste. They should be confiscated, burned, and any memory of them chemically erased from our memory.

    Now a box set with matching cartoon depictions of Mohammad – I’d buy that and I don’t even have a shower with a curtain.

    • Cadwallader

      Who would want such a dark creepy presence in the bathroom each morning?It is difficult enough getting out of bed on these dark wintry days without this brooding presence. I believe it would be distasteful to have these prints on lavatory-paper or Labour party circulars but shower curtains are innocuous.

  • biscuit barrel
  • Usaywot

    How many thousands of shower curtains are there with Hawaiian hula girls on them? I don’t hear Hawaiians complaining. Grow up. Maoris

  • cows4me

    Maori didn’t come down in the last shower you know and I’m sure showering them nice crisp dollar bills will clean up the issue.

    • Boondecker

      It better or the taniwha will come out of the plug hole and have a nibble on you.

  • Damon Mudgway

    Sooo…outrageously culturally insensitive to shower with a pic of your ancester, but okay to beat your tamariki to death.

    Cool culture bro’.

  • Boondecker

    I’ve seen Maori stuff on all sorts of common every-day stuff, like t-towels, t-shirts and biscuit tins and various wrappers on a host of things over the years. I’ve seen it on foreigners tattoos and and I’ve seen it on plastic-molded tourist souvenirs. Hell, I’ve even seen Boeing’s, Fokker’s and Airbus’ covered in it, even on the seats inside where people plant their bums – and apparently where you do and don’t plant your posterior is quite important to these people. I could go on, but these holier-than-thou claims are sanctimonious in the extreme.

    Build a bridge and get over it, as a really annoying person once said to me long ago. I did and, crazy thing, life went on.

  • Christie

    Wouldn’t touch it with a 10 foot pole.

  • Keanne Lawrence

    Natives ranting about intellectual property? Yeah right. Must be a buck to be had there somewhere.

  • Spiker

    It looks like they have been removed from sale, Plenty other maori themed curtains still on the site for your long drop door or whatever though.

  • JEL51

    If only there was as much concern about the living as there is about the dead, then people like me may take note.

    • biscuit barrel

      Best comment of the month !

  • Petrus Calvus

    Since when was portrait painting in oils a part of Maori culture? These curtains are an exploitation of Western European culture.

  • The Fat Man

    As a direct descendant of one of those named. I hereby give my permission.

    I am sure my ancestor would have been proud to have his face on anything, all these years later.

  • WBC

    I guess that in order to show consistency they’ll be stopping the sale of Chinese plastic Tiki’s at Whakarewarewa then?

  • Grumpy of Onehunga

    And… I care?

  • Rick H

    And as for the so-called maori heads returning – what a bunch of hypocrites.
    Back in the day, the trade in “heads – cut off the neighbouring tribe” was huge.
    The heads were not gathered by the “oppressive colonialists”, but supplied freely by the warring, canabilistic locals.

    • johnandali

      From what I was taught at school almost 70 years ago, the enemy tribespeople who were captured, had their faces tattooed, and then they were murdered, their skulls shrunk, and the heads were sold to the colonists. Any so-called Taonga, is absolute garbage.

  • Teakay

    Some readers may recall an incident at the Waikato Rugby Stadium when a local stripper ran topless onto the field during the game. She was arrested and fined for behaviour which was deemed offensive. At every Chiefs home game this season we have been treated to the sight of Maori males dressed up like natives with little other than a thong covering their buttocks and private parts. Many patrons and especially females find this offensive. Perhaps these particular offended Maoris need to be reminded that they also have an obligation to respect the cultural heritage of their Treaty Partners.

  • Uncle Bully

    If the intellectual property rights have expired, then there’s nothing stopping anyone printing Lindauer paintings onto loo paper, is there?

  • Ruby in the Dust

    Fine Art America sells a huge range of shower curtains printed with famous and not so famous paintings, including one of the Mona Lisa. It also sells shower curtains printed with US presidents, a princess, Mother Theresa, and Native American Chief Hollow Horn Bear:

  • Tarris

    Fact is; give them a dollar and they’ll suddenly find that ancestors don’t mind showering