Renowned Hawkes Bay artist completes educational mural for rural school

Hawkes Bay artist Stan Mans recently completed a new mural at rural Pākōwhai School, titled WE’RE MORE THAN JUST APPLES.

Pākōwhai School was one of ten winners in this year’s Keep New Zealand Beautiful Resene Wall Worthy Competition, which gives youth groups, schools and ECEs from across the country the opportunity to paint a mural with an environmental theme or message, to help beautify an area in their local community.

The school commissioned renowned artist Stan Mans to capture both the story and history of the area, with the name of the artwork reflecting the schools’ desire to educate their tamariki on the interconnectedness of nature.

“Now the area is full of orchards and farmland, and our rural school which needs the environment to be looked after and cared for by each new generation,” says Kelly Eyles, teacher at the school.

Pākōwhai School, with a roll of just 28 students, is part of a deep history in the area. A focus of the school, as shown through the mural, is around encouraging bee populations and educating children on the importance bees play in our eco-system.

Ms. Eyles says that, in the near future, Pākōwhai School aims to plant a garden full of the plants that are essential to bees.

The school already has a vegetable garden that is tended by parents, staff and children, and the research for the design of the mural has encouraged the planting of a garden solely for bees, complete with flowers that specifically attract them and encourage them to help pollinate the area.

The mural is located on a stand-alone wall in the centre of the school in Chesterthorpe Road, Pākōwhai and is freely visible to students and visitors.

WE’RE MORE THAN JUST APPLES by Pākōwhai School/Stan Mans

Check out the other winners of our Resene Nature Murals Competition here.

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