New Zealand – Hastings city centre

(Merit Award 1991, New Zealand Planning Institute)

Haukunui / Large Spring water sculpture. Iain Trousdell and colleagues. Wellspring and Rimform models.

Design for Life was commissioned in 1989 by the Hastings City Council to create a water sculpture to serve a multitude of purposes. The sculpture, located in the heart of the commercial area… and the place where there was once a large spring  (Haukunui) supplying the original Maori tribe with water, needed to be the centre of the shopping mall development.

The design had to be visually open, and needed to communicate the importance of water in this largely horticultural district. Finally it needed to provide a very practical barrier between a well used public space and a major railway corridor.

“The resulting sculpture (Haukunui) has richly achieved all these objectives. In addition to its practical qualities it has become a dynamic, yet soothing heart to the New Central Plaza, providing a pleasant place to meet, relax and linger. The water feature continues to draw considerable public comment, and has clearly established itself as the main feature of the Central Area.” – Hastings District Council, November 1990

THEMES: Creating a ‘Signature Sculpture’ that portrayed in small scale the cultural-geographic region.

The Hastings city centre sculpture reflects the nearby hillside streams, as well as the flat plains and the flowering orchards, with forms that unify Maori and European cultures.

Hawkes Bay has an abundance of rivers and wells, relying on them for its wealth.

The sculpture celebrates this using a Mission Architecture style, recreated by our artists with a strong Maori design theme…