Ngati Toa fo­cus at Pataka


For­mer Ti­tahi Bay res­i­dent Wayne Youle came back to his home town to paint sev­eral works of art specif­i­cally look­ing at Ngati Toa Ran­gatira.

Youle was com­mis­sioned by Pataka to paint two por­traits for the Porirua City Coun­cil col­lec­tion – one of Te Rau­paraha and an­other of Te Rangi­haeata. No­ho­rua, the half-brother of Te Rau­paraha, was also rep­re­sented in the se­ries.

‘‘There’s a mas­sive list of peo­ple who could have been done. Orig­i­nally I was only meant to do one, but wanted to rep­re­sent all three,’’ he said.

Youle worked on the paint­ings while he was in res­i­dency at the gallery re­cently.

In­spi­ra­tion came from sim­i­lar draw­ings done by Isaac Coates, a bus tour with Ngati Toa’s Taku Parai, and re­search by him­self and Pataka.

‘‘Get­ting called back to do some­thing like this gives you a real sense of pride, but I know the real im­por­tance is those who are por­trayed in the paint­ing.’’

Youle’s style is a lay­ered process he has per­fected over the years.

‘‘You can’t rush it or you’ll get it wrong.’’

‘‘I’ve al­ways been in­ter­ested in how non- Euro­peans were por­trayed by Euro­peans and I’m al­ways go­ing to paint like this.’’

The art­works were painted us­ing dif­fer­ent colours to show the type of lead­ers Te Rau­paraha and Te Rangi­haeata were.

They took Youle a week to fin- ish and were shown last week.

They will most likely hang in Pataka ini­tially and will then be moved to the coun­cil build­ing.

Though he now lives in Am­ber­ley, north Can­ter­bury, Youle’s con­nec­tion with re­mains strong.

‘‘I al­ways miss this place.’’

Ti­tahi Bay

He started his ca­reer with a show at Pataka, and about four years ago had more work dis­played in the main gallery.

Grow­ing up he was into surf­ing at Ti­tahi Bay Beach and at­tended Mana Col­lege, where he took ev­ery art class he could.

One of Youle’s ear­li­est artist mem­o­ries was doo­dling in books at school.


Wayne Youle re­turned to Ti­tahi Bay to paint two por­traits specif­i­cally look­ing at Ngati Toa Ran­gatira.

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