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Concepts behind Sculptures

Kaka Poria - A wall hanging artwork inspired by a carved ponamu or bone ankle ring. This once Moari practice, employed a method to tether a Kaka, in order to lure others. Carved from Kauri with mother of pearl inlayed around its circular perimeter, this over inflated life ring, in reality stole many Kakas lives. A portrait Kaka on a green metallic Tawari leaf, floating feather light; this avian, framed in spirit, endowed with curiosity and trust, celebrates this unique and cherished bird and the need to protect its habitat.  

Makara acknowledge NZ close threat of war and the strategically located radar towers, erected for defensive combat. This symbolic ear gave rise to an important audio cue, alerting enemy aircrafts before they were sighted. Crystal was an intrinsic component in the mechanism of radio transmitters and the Makara site was a source of quarried crystal. A mother of pearl inlay, with a crystal design is positioned on the lobe of the ear, to convey its significance. It’s meaning in Moari : Ma - white/crystal   Kara - bedrock/greywacke.

Moas Ark - A seed pod like ship is suspended by two charred wish bones, as if in a dry dock, suspended and in limbo. Two important passengers aboard are stoic kauri cones, female and male aloft, on towering pillars. They represent the archetypal Gondwanan element of our flora, acknowledging key research into the underlying belief that NZ Kauri may have survived through a period in Oligocene times when the land mass was totally submerged underwater. Now in contemporary times, a pressing issue of survival for our kauris with Kauri dieback, thrusts these ancient giants into the lime light.

The Godwit sculpture is a tribute to a bird with tremendous stamina and endurance. Its migration path takes it nonstop from New Zealand to Alaska.

Birds that flew in a patterned flight formation was said to inspire and herald a form of visual notation we formally call written language. With this in mind and with a degree of poetic license a pattern like words in a sentence spread over the wings of the Godwit. Its departure and arrival place names obscured, camouflaged inlayed in paua design posted on each wing.

The notion that avian flight patterns could function as written code was probably also suggested by the divinatory practice of ‘reading’ such patterns. If birds were more capable of transmitting signa in their features and through the patterns they make in the sky, why could this not also function as a true and proper alphabet? This idea that the flight of birds was able to inscribe ‘winged words’ as does in an entertaining parallel ‘wings’ like those of Hermes sandals both carry words away and fix them permanently in writing. To which Hermes, god of language and communication, is always there focusing on the ritual at pharae. One thing in particular that strikes our attention is the consistency with which a certain symbolic value is assigned to the part of the body that functions as a kind of compliment to the tongue that is to the ear but is conveyed only as visual sigma.     

The inlaying of paua place names Pukorokoro and Kachemak and patterning over the body and wings simulates a flock of birds. These techniques make reference to destinations the subjects are migrating, when seasons permit.


The Magpie moth is a series of 8 moths completed between 2013 and 2015. These exquisite insects are of huge biological importance. Not only are they important pollinators, they also act as scientific ‘indicators’ of changing levels of light, heat and availability of food. Consequently, some species are the subject of intense study, to see how well they are adapting to environmental changes.

The Weather Idol sculpture culminates as a ritualistic figure of worship.

The irony that mankind can't appease the gods for a better climatic outcome, that our perilous planet predicament is our cause-and-effect scenario, life out on a limb, on a knife edge.

This quirky fetish figurine idol ritualises our fundamental science endeavors, hinting at our obsession to measure and obtain weather conditions data.

A wind anemometer hat adds a comic element to weather events that can wrought mayhem and destruction, our planetary fate lies in the balance. To consider that wind turbines might be an alternative to our reliance on fossil fuel consumption or Rā the sun god provides electrons for the good of humanity, breathes new life into a future with prospects.

Ears like shells, suggest radars with tangible seaweed protrusions, hinting at a quasi-folklore that of conjuring up tactile weather predictions from seaweed.

Making flames vanish and praying for water to reappear as life in flux. Turning photons to electrons, enlightened scientific minds, work their hand in magic.

Perhaps our primitive idol revels in the notion that a panacea from earths alchemy of mineral elements holds the answers, which time will tell.

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