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Students walk away with Whangarei sculpture award
Anthony Dunna and Graham Nathan with their triptych, He tangata, he tangata he tangata Image ©NorthTec

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North Tec bachelor of Maori arts students Graham Nathan and Anthony Dunn have pipped artists around the country to win the best theme and people’s choice awards at Whangarei Sculpture Symposium.

The $4,000 Te Au Marie best theme award was created for the work that best depicted the theme of journeys and first encounters.

It was sponsored by the Te Au Marie 1769 Trust, which is organising the Northland component of next year’s Tuia - Encounters 250 events marking the 250th anniversary Captain James Cook’s arrival in the Endeavour and the first meetings between Maori, James Cook and his Tahitian navigator, Tupaia.

The winning work, He Tangata, He Tangata, He Tangata, is triptych of three one-metre high limestone sculptures each sitting on a base of totara wood embodying the three different world views that Maori, Cook, and Tupaia represent.

The work will eventually be mounted by Far North Holdings at the upgraded Bay of Islands airport in Kerikeri,.

Meanwhile the Department of Internal Affairs says it is putting $9 million of Lottery Grants Board funding into projects linked to the Tuia - Encounters 250 commemoration.

The programme will open on April 4 and applications will be accepted throughout the year.

Eligibility criteria can be found at


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