Belgian DJ Netsky apologises for video depicting 'cultural appropriation' of Māori at America's Cup afterparty

Belgian DJ Netsky today apologised for a video depicting "cultural appropriation" posted to his Instagram account from an America's Cup afterparty.

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The Belgian DJ played a surprise New Year’s Eve performance at Rhythm and Vines last year. Source: Breakfast

The video features a Caucasian woman and men attempting to pull a pūkana faces at the camera.

The Māori Dictionary defines a pūkana as: "To stare wildly, dilate the eyes — done by both genders when performing haka and waiata to emphasise particular words and to add excitement to the performance."

Netsky posted the video to his Instagram story last night. It has since been shared around on social media by other users unhappy with its depiction of Māori culture.

It has been viewed over 30,000 times since being reposted on former gossip columnist Pebble Hooper's Twitter account.

"Celebrating NZ should not come at the cost of mocking our indigenous people. No excuses for this racist behaviour," one Twitter user commented on the video.

"Oh god these people make my skin crawl," wrote another.

However, not everyone's comments on the video were damning.

"Cringey stuff, but maybe they were trying (and failing) to celebrate NZ after a win? Not sure it's worth rustling up a mob for (please don't kill me twitter)."

This afternoon, Netsky issued an apology for the video.

"I'm embarrassed and ashamed of myself. I obviously have a lot to learn. I need to educate myself in issues of cultural appropriation and I am committed to doing this.

"I apologise to everyone I've offended."

Netsky, whose real name is Boris Daenan, recently spoke to 1 NEWS about his love and passion for New Zealand after completing managed isolation in secret and surprising festival-goers at Rhythm and Vines to bring in 2021 at what was billed as the biggest party in the world.

He described the feeling of taking the stage in Gisborne, having secretly completed managed isolation, "like winning the lottery".

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The Belgian DJ is touring the country after surprising revellers at Rhythm and Vines. Source: 1 NEWS

“It's always felt like a second home and I've always really looked for an excuse to stay a little bit longer, because I've only ever spent a month, two months here.

"Now I’ve finally got an excuse not to leave,” he said.

After appearances at festivals as both a performer and punter over the summer, Netsky heaped praise on New Zealand acts L.A.B, Six60 and Shapeshifter, hinting at future collaborations.

“It's such a lively music industry and scene right now and people are so hungry for entertainment. It seems this year it's like the roaring 20s in New Zealand,” he said.

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The 29-year-old will be performing in Auckland this weekend. Source: 1 NEWS

The drum and bass artist is also looking to work with emerging talent, once his eight-date February tour wraps up.

He’s sold out Spark Arena once, added another show there, and you’d be lucky to find a ticket for gigs in Napier, Wellington, Christchurch and Dunedin.

While the 31-year-old says he couldn’t have imagined touring in 2021 during a global pandemic, he’s mindful of what fellow artists in hard-hit countries are going through.

“With all these tickets flying out and this amazing excitement, every festival selling out [in New Zealand] you can really feel that that might happen in Europe and America and Asia after this as well, which is something for people to look forward to.”