Old trea­sures un­der the roof

Rotorua Weekender - - Arts Corner - Brian Potiki

Re-roof­ing this week — old house, big, dirty job.

One thing tossed on the wood heap is a bit dif­fer­ent — it’s a sculp­ture I com­mis­sioned from an adult stu­dent at Wa­iariki Polytech for $100, a replica of a flag­pole used by Ma¯ ori in the land wars.

I in­tended it for the sec­ond tour of my play Hiroki’s Song but de­cided to go with a scaf­fold­ing and iron set by late sculp­tor Robert Leger, a stu­dent on the same Ma¯ ori art and de­sign course.

It’s stood like a sen­tinel on the roof’s high­est point for al­most 30 years and, ac­cord­ing to the roofer, could’ve caused the leaks around the bay win­dow below.

Also taken down tem­po­rar­ily is Jill’s print of The Drunken Boat, re­call­ing the rot­ting dinghy I stood on the lawn painted with lines from Rim­baud’s fa­mous poem. It fell over some­time dur­ing a win­ter storm and was burnt on an out­door fire.

Older still, weathered but still stand­ing by the drive, is a man­aia (bird) carved from a to¯ tara gatepost from Welling­ton’s his­toric Ter­race Gaol. It was carved by pub­lisher Roger Steele — Ro­torua born, one-time city coun­cil­lor — and painted by me.

Then there’s the let­ter­box I made from an ap­ple crate, big enough to take parcels.

The orig­i­nal had a tu­atara painted on it, dot-style, like Aboriginal art. The cur­rent one’s an ex­act copy, blue and white, the colours of the Greek flag.

■ Brian Potiki is a lo­cal artist and poet.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from New Zealand

© PressReader. All rights reserved.