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Wellington artist Isobel Te Aho-White unveils award-winning mural

Wellington artist Isobel Te Aho-White unveils award-winning mural

Wellington artist, Isobel Te Aho-White, has unveiled her award-winning mural on the side of Newtown Mall on Riddiford Street, Wellington.

Isobel was one of ten winners from across the country who took out the top prize in Keep New Zealand Beautiful’s (KNZB) Resene Nature Murals Competition 2019.

The mural, titled ‘Whenua Ataahua’, depicts the perspective of mātauranga Maori around preserving our whenua. In her submission Isobel said the mural is a mix of traditional Maori and illustrative elements which create a contemporary design acknowledging indigenous wisdom around environmental issues in our current times.

On completion of the mural Isobel said: “I would have to say that I put a lot of aroha into it, and it was an absolute dream to work on. The mural expresses the views of our ancestors about being kaitiaki of Papatuānuku and also living in harmony with her, which is an ancient and important outlook when it comes to combatting climate change”.

The Resene Nature Murals Competition, which is part of the Paint New Zealand Beautiful programme, ran from February – April 2019, with artists encouraged to submit mural designs which included an environmental message. Artists from around the country sent in their designs, with the top ten murals selected based on their environmental message, enhancement of the community, and originality/creativity. Winning designs receive a $1000 grant, along with a $750 Resene paint voucher and other materials to paint their mural.

KNZB CEO, Heather Saunderson, said: “KNZB is proud to partner with Resene again this year to deter vandalism and Paint New Zealand Beautiful. Numerous studies have shown the great impact murals have on their surrounding communities – from increasing civic pride, to a reduction in anti-social behaviour such as littering and graffiti. Together with Resene, we’re excited to see Isobel’s mural come to life and to help Wellington beautify their corner of New Zealand”.

Isobel Te Aho-Whites award-winning mural ‘Whenua Ataahua’  on the side of Newtown Mall on Riddiford Street, Wellington. 

The ten winning artists and regions are listed below, with their designs visible on the Keep New Zealand Beautiful website.

  • Yeon Seo Kim – Auckland
  • Sara Fernandez – Auckland
  • Luther Ashford – South Taranaki
  • Stan Mans – Hastings
  • Jil Sergent – Central Hawkes Bay
  • Isobel Te Aho-White – Wellington
  • Rosa Friend – Wellington
  • Hannah Starnes – Nelson
  • Madison Kelly – Dunedin
  • Claire Rye – Dunedin
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