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Artists chosen to make their mark on Grey Lynn

Artists chosen to make their mark on Grey Lynn

Artists Lonnie Hutchinson and John Ioane, have been unanimously selected by the Grey Lynn Artwork Reference Group to develop detailed designs for a proposed artwork for Grey Lynn.

The Reference Group were presented with proposals from artists Filipe Tohi, Anthony Sumich, and Lonnie Hutchison and John Ioane in collaboration. The artists showed models of their proposed work and discussed the concepts behind their creations.

Chairperson of the Arts, Culture and Recreation Committee, Councillor Penny Sefuiva, said all of the proposals were of a very high standard.

“We felt that the concept proposed by the artists we have selected best reflected the area's cultural history and celebrated the artistic talents of the community. We are about to start planning an upgrade to the streetscape and we feel that a significant artwork could provide a focal point for Grey Lynn's new look."

The next phase of work for the two artists will involve: • collaborating with the Auckland City streetscape designer to ensure the artwork is integrated appropriately within the overall Grey Lynn streetscape upgrade planning and concept design • developing detailed design specifications for the artwork showing all structural detail and costings including relevant engineering reports. A site for the artwork will be identified as part of the streetscape planning process. This process will include the opportunity for the community to give feedback on the artwork and its inclusion within the streetscape plans.

Producing and installing the artwork is anticipated to cost $100,000 and is subject to funds being raised. Brian McClure, a member of the Grey Lynn Business Association, is undertaking fundraising and seeking sponsorship to cover this cost.

“Local residents will hopefully take an active interest in the design process for their town centre. This sculpture will probably become the symbol for Grey Lynn and it is important that the community is involved in the discussion," says Graeme Easte, chairperson of the Western Bays Community Board.


Note to editors: Image of artwork attached.

Concept for artwork The artist’s concept is based firstly on the Maori history of the area. The Surrey Crescent ridge was known as Te Raeokawharu, 'Kawharu's brow' commemorating the spot where an invading chief rested. The design for the gateway commemorates this history, using the form of the 'heru or comb like the one Kawharu would have worn in his hair. The comb or 'selu (Samoan) form also acknowledges the many Pacific Islanders that came to live in Grey Lynn back in the 1950s.

The comb form is a metaphor for looking after and caring for the environment and others in our community.

The cutout forms of birds in the comb, symbolise migration, navigation, freedom and peace. The birds acknowledge Pakeha and indigenous migration. The shadows from the cut-out forms will fall on the ground and depending on the sun's movement, these shadows will overlay and merge with the solid ones on the ground – a symbol of the coming together after the awkward differences of the past. These bird forms could be repeated on footpaths and on the sides of buildings.

Artist bio

Lonnie Hutchinson
◦ Born in Auckland, lives in Point Chevalier
◦ Ngai Tahu / Samoan
◦ Hutchinson works as a multi-media artist: in the fields of painting , sculpture, installation , moving image.
◦ Bachelor of 3D and Spatial Design at Unitec, Diploma in Textile Printing at AUT, Diploma of Education
◦ Currently managing Tautai Contemporary Pacific Art Trust
◦ Has had solo exhibitions at Auckland Museum, Wellington City Gallery and group shows at many public galleries throughout NZ and in Australia, Brazil, Lithuania and Canada
◦ Work held in many public collections including Auckland Art Gallery, Christchurch Art Gallery, Queensland Art Gallery, University of Auckland, Dowse Gallery, Banff Art Centre Canada and private collections

John Ioane
◦ John Ioane is a New Zealand born Samoan multi – media artist,
◦ Bachelor of Fine Arts, Elam, Teaching Diploma, Post Grad Diploma in Fine Arts
◦ Currently Head of Art at St Pauls College, Auckland. Has also worked as an external assessor for Masters programmes Te Toi Hou at Elam
◦ Has exhibited at public galleries including Auckland Art Gallery, The Dowse, Artspace,
◦ Work is held in many public collections including Auckland Art Gallery, Te Papa, Auckland University Collection, James Wallace Trust, Auckland College of Education, Tjibaou Cultural Centre Noumea, New Caledonia

More info on Lonnie, John and Filipe can be found on

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