Taika Waititi is a director, writer, actor and producer from Aotearoa New Zealand, known for his eye for the absurd. His films include Boy (2010), Hunt for the Wilderpeople (2016) and Thor: Ragnarok (2017), as well as Jojo Rabbit (2019), which he wrote, directed and starred in, and for which he won an Academy Award for best adapted screenplay.
‘His films demonstrate an affection for innocence, with stories often told through a child’s eye. I remember watching Boy and being blown away by its charm,’ says second-time Archibald finalist Claus Stangl, who came to Australia from the UK in 2008.
‘I wanted to create a portrait that captured Taika’s sense of humour and to execute it in a playful cinematic style, reminiscent of the movies of the 1970s and ’80s that were playing when he was a child. After sharing some concepts with Taika, we landed on the idea of making a 3D-style portrait using the reds and greens from retro cardboard glasses.
‘This piece is part portrait and part performance – an apt execution for a man who is as comfortable in front of the camera as he is behind it.’