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Sculpture journey about to begin

The journey James Cook and his Polynesian navigator Tupaia made nearly 250 years ago is the inspiration behind the theme of this year’s Whangarei Sculpture Symposium. The sculpture which best depicts the ‘journey’ theme will be unveiled as part of the region’s 2019 national Tuia – Encounters 250 celebrations in 2019 commemorating 250 years since Cook’s ship The Endeavour reached New Zealand.

The Te Au Mārie Trust are responsible for Northland’s Tuia – Encounters 250 programme of events and activities. The Trust’s co-chair Jane Hindle said “the symposium’s theme ‘journey’ is based on first encounters and meetings, as well as the great traditions and history of exploring and navigating Polynesian and Europeans undertook in their journeys to discover Aotearoa.”

At the completion of the symposium, the winning piece is selected and awarded $6,000 with the sculpture to be installed in a public space within the Whangarei District. This year, the artwork which best interprets the theme will be awarded $4,000 and the artwork will be installed at the Bay of Islands Airport in Kerikeri where Mrs Hindle said it will “welcome not just visitors to our incredible region, but also those returning home.”

“Part of our kaupapa is to create legacies for our region that will remain long after the commemoration events are done. When the opportunity arose to work with Far North Holdings Limited to provide a statement piece of art for the planned upgrade of Bay of Islands Airport, it made sense to partner with Creative Northland’s Whangarei Sculpture Symposium for this significant piece of work.” The sculpture will be officially unveiled in 2019 as part of Northland’s Tuia – Encounters 250 commemoration events.

Remaining artworks are auctioned off at the end of the symposium.

Sculpting commenced after an official welcome on 12 March, with tools down at 1pm on Wednesday 21 March. The symposium will be open to the public daily between 9am- 5pm. It will reopen from 2.00pm on Thursday 22 March so the public can have one last look at the sculptures before the live auction commences at 5.30pm.

About Te Au Mārie 1769 Trust

Established in 2015, the Te Au Mārie 1769 Trust has been established celebrate and share the diverse histories of voyaging and encounters in Tai Tokerau to commemorate Captain Cooks landing in Northland as part of the national Tuia – Encounters 250 programme. A variety of events are planned in the Bay of Islands, Whangarei and across Northland. The Endeavour replica, accompanied by a flotilla of waka and traditional vessels, will visit the Bay of Islands in October 2019. The Trust is also focussing on long-term legacies which will have a positive social, cultural, ecological and economic impact and will include ecological restoration, as well as cultural and education initiatives.

For more information go to www.teaumarie1769.org.nz

About Tuia – Encounters 250

Tuia – Encounters 250 is a nationally significant tier 1 event coordinated by the Ministry of Culture and Heritage. They are working in partnership with trusts established in four of the Endeavour’s original landing sites - Bay of Islands, Gisborne, Coromandel, and Marlborough - to coordinate the national event for Tuia - Encounters 250 and to progress strong regional commemorative programmes.

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