Artists & Groups

From Central Otago

Profiles » View Profile

Māniatoto Mural

Organisation / Group: Māniatoto Mural, Charlemont Street, Ranfurly

Words from Maniototo Community Arts Council representative Amie Pont

In September 2020 the Māniatoto Community Arts Council and Rural Art Deco Inc. began an application to the Lottery COVID-19 Community Wellbeing Fund. In February 2021 we were approved for a grant for $10,000. The aim was to create a large installation which represented the wider Māniatoto. Community consultation led to some key themes that our residents wished to see represented. These included: The Taiari River, significant landscape features, farming, agriculture, industry, recreation, stock, flora and fauna, our people and our heritage. It was important we continued the art deco theme of the existing installations in the town and also that we make the most of bringing some colour to Ranfurly. Also, what was strongly supported was the chance to acknowledge one of Ranfurly’s well known buildings lost in a fire in 2010. This building was ‘Ranfurly Auto’ (owned by Dick & Janet Parker) and was originally Pringles’ Garage. It has been wonderful working with Joan and Maurice Pringle to make sure we got it right. Reference is also made to our historical buildings, the Green Bridge at Waipiata, the Otago Central Rail Trail and used a less often referenced Kakanui Range and Mt Kyeburn in the background. We enlisted artist Lisa Moes from Wānaka. Lisa graduated from Massey University before moving South. She holds a Bachelor of Design with first class honours. The considered composition in Lisa’s work demonstrates her graphic design skills, whilst her technical competence reveals her refined painting skills. She specialises in highly polished photorealistic paintings along with beautiful colour illustrations. Lisa was able to encompass the multiple factors the community wanted included while portraying an overall art deco theme. When Lisa provided the first draft, she provided it with the authentic te reo spelling, Māniatoto. During that time, the te reo spelling was confirmed publicly on Waitangi Day 2022 by kaumātua Edward Ellison (Te Rūnanga o Ngāi Tahu) and can be viewed on YouTube. As of April 2022, Central Otago District Council staff commenced using the authentic spelling of Māniatoto. This move was made in recognition of our relationship with iwi as well as our obligations to Te Tiriti o Waitangi. It meant that, from now on, they would be using the spelling Māniatoto in all operational documents. The local Community Board were advised, and they were very relaxed about the change. Council still needs to adopt the spelling change through a formal process and this is likely to occur in the representation review that Council is required to undertake this year. In the meantime, Council staff are all using and encouraging others to use the Māniatoto spelling when referring to our beautiful part of the world. When it came to acknowledging our tangata whenua, our knowledge was limited and all we could think of was a quirky link to the moa prints on the white sands. So, the decision to keep the authentic spelling was a way for us also to acknowledge the ‘mana’ in a name in this installation and our connection. Enjoy this creative community collaboration.