Artwork depicts Mt Albert
A square of lace, a jar of jam, a railway crossing, a rocket and a big red tree.
These are just some of the ingredients that make up the recipe for Mt Albert.
Artist Zoe Nash discovered this when she put together a new art work to be displayed outside the Mt Albert Community and Recreation Centre.
She spent six months researching what Mt Albert means to its residents and incorporated her findings into the piece.
It was officially unveiled last weekend and Ms Nash is thrilled with the result.
“I’m really pleased with how it’s come together, the details are very subtle but the more you look at it the more you see,” she says.
“The best part has been seeing the joy on people’s faces when they recognise pieces they’ve contributed to.”
The Mt Albert art project was organised as part of the Auckland City Council’s strong communities programme, which aims to bring local people together.
As a Mt Albert local, Ms Nash was hired to research and design the artwork.
She organised a series of public meetings, workshops and tours around Mt Albert and combined all the resulting photos, drawings and images together.
Included in the artwork are symbols of Mt Albert’s colonial past – historic buildings such as Alberton, Ferndale, and Hebron Christian College, cows, bungalows and farming machinery.
Cultural symbols such as Pacific inspired patterns, Punjabi embroidery, Chinese and Japanese brocades and Middle Eastern decorations also feature.
The green spaces and parks of Mt Albert are referred to through ferns, flax, native and imported trees, ducks, birds, water lilies and more.
Home-made jam and peggy squares, a child’s design of the rocket at Rocket Park, local churches, schools and a red tree sculpture which sits in the fields of the Mt Albert community centre can also be seen.
Ms Nash says the best part of the project was giving people in the community a chance to be involved.
“It’s nice to give their memories a new lease of life and I have enjoyed seeing people look for their ideas in the work,” she says.
Ms Nash says there has been a lot of focus on negative aspects of Mt Albert lately so the work is designed to show what is good about living in the suburb.
Auckland city councillor Paul Goldsmith says the project was a means of drawing the community together.
“The result is quite wonderful really,” he says.
“It has a lot of quirks and interest and a lot of resonance for people.”
The artwork is displayed at the Mt Albert Community and Recreation Centre, 773 New North Rd.