27 Nov 2023
Southland creatives are invited to register their interest in an exciting Matariki wayfinding project.
The project is being led by Southland District Council, Te Ao Mārama and Ngāi Tahu, and is being co-funded by the Tourism Infrastructure Fund.
The project calls for the creation of 10 pou – eight in the Southland district area and two in the Invercargill area – each representing one of the prominent stars in the Matariki cluster, which heralds the Māori New Year.
In Māori pūrākau (storytelling), each star is characterised by an entity who relates to the surroundings or the seasons they watch over.
Te Ao Mārama kaupapa taiao manager Dean Whaanga says the objective is to create a wayfinding experience throughout Southland whereby travellers can journey from one town to the next to see the artworks and read the story of the Matariki constellation, and how the stars relate to the landscape.
“We’re trying to create something really special at each of these sites,” he says.
“We are looking for people to create the pou, which can be up to three metres tall and can be crafted from a variety of materials.”
Dean says the pou will be on the landscape for a long time, so must be created to last.
“If you’ve got that skill, and you’ve got that desire, get in touch with us.”