Final farewell Ralph Hotere

00:41, Feb 28 2013
Hotere
GOODBYE: Mourners at today's service for artist Ralph Hotere, ONZ.

Mourners at the Dunedin funeral for celebrated artist Ralph Hotere have heard of his diversity, depth, humility  and personal integrity.

Minister of  Culture and heritage Chris Finlayson said Hotere was a great New Zealander and one of the city's favourite adopted sons.

The artist, whose real name was Hone Papita Raukura, reflected his views on social and political issues, threats to the environment, apartheid and racism, in his works, Finlayson said.

Judith Ablett-Kerr, QC, described her long friendship with Hotere, which began when he was fighting to prevent the loss, through port development,  of his land at Observation Pt in Port Chalmers. It was home to some of his treasured sculptures.

The friendship developed to a deep affection and she used to call Hotere "the man". Even a massive stroke 12 years ago could not keep him down, she said.

Once he was bestowed with the Order of New Zealand in 2011, she began referring to him as "the great man" which always raised a chuckle from him, she said.

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