ICONS OF KIWIANA
• THE EDMONDS BAKING POWDER label. Established in 1879, the trademark is one of New Zealand’s best-known brands. Thomas Edmonds told a doubting customer her baking was “sure to rise” if she used the product.
•CHES AND DALE. The rural cartoon characters – the shorter one illustrated by Dick Frizzell – appeared in television ads for Chesdale cheese in the late 1960s, singing the jingle: “We are the boys from down on the farm, we really know our cheese...”
• THE BLACK SINGLET. Popularised by Fred Dagg (John Clarke) in the 1970s, the singlet was worn by shearers and farmers from the early 1900s.
• THE BUZZY BEE. The pull-along children’s toy was made by Auckland ckland brothers Hec and John Ramsey y in the 1940s, but in his book Crikey! Talk about Kiwiana, Richard Wolfe says ays the idea actually came from a toy made by Fisher- Price in New York. ork.
• CORRUGATED IRON ANIMALS. ALS. Artist and sculptor Jeff Thomson’s on’s creations are in public and private ate collections around the world. Thomson-inspired corrugated iron ron signage and animals are among g the main attractions of Tirau.
• FOOTROT FLATS’ DOG. Murray ray Ball’s cartoon sheepdog, along with other characters including Wal and Cooch, were born in 1975 and have outlived their creator, who died last year. The original newspaper cartoon strip spawned books, a movie, a musical and even a theme park.
• THE FOUR SQUARE GROCER. Wolfe says the image was based on an actual grocer, George Allan, who opened a store in Auckland after returning from World War II. When Dick Frizzell included his own version of the image in a 1982 artwork, it became so popular it ended up being reproduced on prints, posters and tea towels.
property because they enjoy the lifestyle, many have been demolished or have fallen down. A simple dwelling built in a special spot near a beach, stream or river isn’t unique to New Zealand, he says, but “baches in the way we use them, and the word, may be unique. We have indigenous Māori architecture with the wharenui, and I also think the knocked-together nature of many of those older baches was a sort of New Zealand architecture.”
He agrees some baches should be protected, saying the Department of Conservation needs to look after our cultural as well as our ecological landscape.
Architect Nigel Cook described the bach as “the only truly indigenous building type the second wave of immigrants to these islands have thus far produced”.