Angela Maritz at Creative Tauranga Community Gallery


The environment and garden focused exhibition by Angela Maritz took up all the gallery spaces in the Creative Tauranga Community Gallery. It featured birds and flowers:

It would be unkind to say it was conventional; the colour and vibrance of the flowers and the capturing of the styles and personalities of the gulls moved the exhibition away from ordinary. A party of visitors and tourists was in the Gallery when I went in and they spent some time examining the gull paintings, identifying which particular painting they’d like in their home. Anyone who’s been around Tauranga and Mount Maunganui would see that Maritz’ paintings are true representations of components of our Bay landscape.

Facing the main entrance to Creative Tauranga is information about The Hairy Maclary Waterfront Sculpture Project. The nose of the bronze statue Bottomley Potts is now shiny and yellow. Originally the dark brown of the bronze, his canine nose has been rubbed by so many well wishers (and not all children) that it’s now gleaming. “Look how high he is” a little voice squeaks. “Who is that?” asks the Dad, “I’ll give you a clue – he’s covered in spots..” Two family groups, one speaking other than English, crowd round the displayed Hairy Maclary Sculpture Project character. Out from behind the reception desk steps Nina and goes through the project display board with them. When these characters finally get installed on the Strand they are going to be greatly appreciated and very much visited.

But wait, there’s more! Millie Newitt is the current Creative Tauranga Gallery Curator and Arts Advisor. A local artist, Millie has a limited amount of work on view. There are some paintings and several nostalgic shadow boxes created from repurposed, found objects. At the invitation of one of her personal friends, Millie also participated in the creation of the Angel’s Wings, outdoor art on private property in the Downtown Tauranga CBD. The Angel’s Wings have proved immensely popular with locals and visitors for photographs – could this be Tauranga’s answer to Katikati’s mural art?

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Rosemary Balu


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