New art work for Whangarei Aquatic Centre
18 November 2019
Recently, local artists Marino Duke (Ngātiwai) and Josh Moetara (Ngāpuhi, Ngāti Whātua) have brought to life two kaitiaki which stand as sentinels at the entrance of the Whangarei Aquatic Centre.
These designs fuse traditional Toi Māori forms into a contemporary expression, acting as guardians to all those that enter the facility. They represent the two Māori Atua or deity, Tāne Mahuta (in green), Atua of the Forest, and Tangaroa (in blue), Atua of the sea, and symbolise the historical voyage of Māori coming from Hawaiki, as tāngata moana or people of the sea, arriving in Aotearoa and becoming tāngata whenua or people of the land.
They additionally reflect the journey of the individual overcoming obstacles and trials, bringing to light new wisdom and growth in te ao mārama or the world of light.
It is hoped that these pieces are the first of many to come, linking the facility to its people, its place, and its purpose.