Berlin-Based Poet Hinemoana Baker on Connections

Ahead of her recent reading at Internationales Literaturfestival Berlin (ILB), mould-breaking poet Hinemoana Baker talked English-language magazine Exberliner through her new book, the New Zealand-Berlin connection and why Germans should stop doing the haka.

Christchurch-born Baker moved to Berlin in 2015. Earlier this year, her new collection Funkhaus was shortlisted for New Zealand’s most prestigious literary prize, the Ockhams.

Baker said being acknowledged by New Zealand felt surreal.

“I’ve won residencies and things, but I don’t often get nominated for awards. I think I just don’t comfortably fit in existing categories,” Baker told the Exberliner. “I’m a Māori writer, but I’m also very open about being mixed-ethnicity. And I’m a queer writer, but I don’t write overtly queer stuff. I write poetry, and poetry’s not really big in New Zealand. Rugby is huge – but not so much poetry. Still, we do have shit-hot poets, and I’m glad to be from there.”

Baker is also a musician and a broadcaster. She is completing a PhD at the University of Potsdam.

Original article by Exberliner, September 6, 2021.

Photo by Ashley Clarke.

Tags: Berlin  ExBerliner  Funkhaus  Hinemoana Baker  Poetry  

Primer’s Anna Saunders Looks Beyond Profit to Cause

Primer’s Anna Saunders Looks Beyond Profit to Cause

Founded by former Marie Claire editors New Zealander Anna Saunders and Australian Felicity Robinson in 2019, self-funded publication Primer is the latest addition to the local crop of social enterprises –…