Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Friday shootout: Public Art


Volcanoes are a conspicuous feature of the Auckland city landscape. In some cases their form is emphasised by their preservation as reserves and parks, while in others they have been quarried to meet the city’s demand for building materials. Within a radius of about 20km centred on Auckland city there are 49 discrete volcanoes; this is the area referred to as the Auckland volcanic field, Here New Zealand sculptor John Radford made three of these realistic remnants of Auckland buildings and depicted the after maths of an earthquarke in Western Park in Ponsonby.


On the top of Mt Eden volcano, are various memorials, and this obelix is to remember many of the city fathers, and surveyors.

At Mt Roskill, the heartland of Christiandom, this cross stands high on top of Mt Roskill volcano.

Auckland is surrounded by sea, and you see sea gulls everywhere. Here some one commissioned an artist to make a series of metal sea gulls at the downtown waterfront.

To blend witth nature, many of our public toilets have nature murals.

The original people in New Zealand are the Maoris. These art motiffs are present in our Kiwiana art. This is a flower which has the koru (spiral) and I see a tongue which is important in Maori culture.
Protruding tongue
The often present protruding tongue, a characteristic feature in Maori art, is also used in ceremonial Maori war dance (haka). It is a sign of determination, strength and defiance.
"In New Zealand, the protrusion of the tongue was a sign of defiance and in war dances and posture dances, the performers vied with each other in protruding the tongue as far as possible."
source: nzetc.org



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June 11 - Public Art

by Barry and Linda

Public Art is the way our various towns represent themselves to the outside world. By definition Public Art is artwork that is free, publicly displayed and tells the world something about us. Often it is represented by the ubiquitous general on his horse, sword raised in triumph, the poet in his robes clutching his books to his chest, the heroine in flowing robes. Sometimes it represents a famous moment in local, national or world history or transports us back in time to remind us of our roots.
In a more modern context it may be represented by a work that is more abstract and serves as a design element to bring a public building to life.
Whatever it is in the context of your town, here is your chance to share it with us for next Friday's shoot out!

Barry Fraser,

24 comments:

Reader Wil said...

Good post about public art! A great subject for a new meme, Ann!
Volcanoes are destructive but eventually they are also adding useful material to the environment. My next post for ABC Wednesday will be V for Volcanoes.
We also used umbrellas in Indonesia. We called them "payongs".We used them also as sunshades.

Dar said...

Thank You Ann, for teaching again today, more about your country. It is always interesting to learn about another world. What is the significance of the tongue in Maoris, (did I spell that right?)...culture?
Have a wonderful Day
BlessYourHeartWithSunshine

Redlan said...

I never thought there are lots of volcanoes in NZ. Although you mentioned some on your previous post but 49 volcanoes oh my. Is dormant volcanoes included? Philippines has 21 volcanoes both active and dormant I guess. I just realized Philippines is a small country composed of 7,107 islands and NZ is one of the big continents.

Thanks for sharing some public art in your place especially that painted public toilet. I never realized it was a toilet by looking at the photo until I read it. I am looking forward next week Ann. Ill be back here.

Cindy said...

So many interesting things! I love learning new things about another country. I am especially impressed with the painting on the public restroom. It fits in and is very beautiful as well.
About my pruners hanging on the garage adjacent to my patio: they are antiques, very old, so no, I don't use them, I found them at a garage sale and was intrigued with them. The birdcage is only for looks. I love birds, but not in cages, we have hundreds at a time in our yard, that's enough.
Thank you for your interest! Appreciate your comments. I'm surprised to hear of the unrest in NZ, I have always thought it was a peaceful country like Aus. and Canada.
Hugs, Cindy S

NanU said...

Wonderful Shootout, Ann. Our region too is made of volcanos. Every little bump, up to the iconic mountain - another volcano. Must have been quite something to see 10,000 years ago when they were still erupting.
I love the murals on the toilets; that's a neat way to get some art out there and make a boring building interesting. And the Maori art is beautiful!

Kerry said...

I live within sight of a number of volcanoes, too, and they can provide a powerful inspiration for art.

I like that mural on the public toilets: great idea!

Kerry said...

Anne, you can delete this comment if you want to, but there is still an adware issue on your site: a big ad pops up when I come here, covering the top half of your post!

Cheryl said...

I certainly enjoyed seeing all of the public artwork.

Manang Kim said...

I love public art because it makes me wonder and think about what happened and how it was made. Thanks for sharing Anni. Happy Friday!


Public Art

Jama said...

I love the Maori art piece, so beautifully done!

Ann said...

Hi Dar,

Thanks for your interest.

Protruding tongue
The often present protruding tongue, a characteristic feature in Maori art, is also used in ceremonial Maori war dance (haka). It is a sign of determination, strength and defiance.


"In New Zealand, the protrusion of the tongue was a sign of defiance and in war dances and posture dances, the performers vied with each other in protruding the tongue as far as possible."

source: nzetc.org

This protuding tongue is accompanied with bulging eyes.

All very frightening to the uninitiated.

Kerry said...

Hi Ann, back again, and no ad right now. Earlier in the day I came here twice, though, from different computers and it happened both times. Unfortunately I don't remember whose ads they were; I'll let you know if it happens again.

Tammie Lee said...

I like the trees painted on the side of the building. I didn't know that you have had volcanoes... We have seagulls too, it surprised me being so far inland, I thought they were a sea bird, not so.

Camella Black said...

Wonderful as always... loved the public art on the public bathroom!

Bagman and Butler said...

Fascinating stuff. The trees behind the mural of trees on the public bathroom makes it look transparent. I also liked the idea of sculpture that looks like a mostly buried building.

A Scattering said...

Great selection Ann, I particularly like the seagull. Have a great weekend!

Barry said...

A great selection, Ann. I like what your doing to make the public toilets blend in and the Maori art is just beautiful!

I had a adware popup that covered your page when I arrived as well.

Doreen said...

I always enjoy your posts Ann. So very interesting and full of info on the history of New Zealand. I think the remnants of the volcanos.

I also get pop ups on a regular basis.

Cheryl said...

Nicely done showing some interesting public art. Knowing its origin makes this a doubly good read.

CollectIn Texas Gal said...

Great account of the history of each photograph. Enjoyed all of your public art forms.

shabby girl said...

I enjoyed your shootout. I've wondered about the whole tongue thing! I didn't understand it. Thanks for the lesson! :)

J9 said...

Love the murals, and never knew what the tongue was about - thank you for the post and the lesson!

Doreen said...

I meant to say, I like the remnants of the volcano!! lol

Pauline said...

That's a great shoot-out, Ann. I like the objects you chose!