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River mural takes a break for winter

June 1st, 2015
[by David Armstrong]

The mural depicting the Motueka River and what it means to the town is now on pause as winter chill makes painting impractical.

The colourful mural "Te Awa - Our River" has been filling out on the south wall of the Whitwells Menswear store, in the process drawing many favourable comments from passers by.

What is there as the winter recess begins was painted over five weekends, beginning on Anzac Day, by about 15 people so far, all of whom have had little or no prior muraling experience but have been guided by the mural designer and managing artist, Karin Fruhauf.

While Karin is paid a nominal fee for supervising the work, all other painters are volunteers and community members.

Much of the work so far has been to block in the main colours. When painting resumes - probably in late August - this "colouring in" will be completed, while more experienced and skilled artists will continue the early work of painting details of the paddlers, swimmers, fishers etc.

A feature of the mural design is a Maori kowhaiwhai or repeating pattern, to be blended into the sky. That design is the same as the one developed by local iwi over the centuries and is a core part of the interior decoration of the wharenui at Te Awhina Marae.

It is also hoped that a cut-down version of that kowhaiwhai will be painted around the border of the mural by iwi members.

Those interested in viewing the progress of the mural to date can scroll down the Vision Murals' page on Facebook, by clicking here.


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