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Why Oh Why Is There a Pile of Bricks Outside Government?

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Rob West
Rob West

There are many fantastic and inspiring works of art round Wellington. Everything from the crazy wall art on Cuba to the magnificent metallic shapes out the front of Te Papa. There is art commemorating, enhancing, proclaiming entrances and for every other forseeable reason one might place art somewhere around the Capital. Rightly so, as Wellington is also the arts centre of New Zealand as demonstrated by the plaethora of statues etc as well the art galleries and theatres. I love th city for this reason and I find some of the art to be wholy attractive and inspiring despite not really being an art lover.

However why oh why would you place three piles of bricks outside the parlaimentary buildings?

The art in question is Kaiwhakatere by Brett Graham. It's not this woprk of art is really that meaningless, the statues are representations of the polynesian tools of navigation celebrating the fact that the shoreline was once in this place. The navigator in this context is celebrated as a pathfinder and visionary leader hence the link to government. All fine as far as I'm concerned and very righteaous relevant reasons.

However, have you seen it? It's dull, it's drab and depressing. The stone is becoming more so over time and honestly says more to me about drab 1970s architecture than the inspiring mission of government. Why on earth would you put such an uninspiring piece of art work outside an institution that struiggles with the exact same image issues. Maybe it is some under the counter jab by Mr Graham and the sponsors of the art to suggest that gavernment is that boring.

I drive or walk past this art daily and am totally bemused by its presence. Is it not time to replace it with something more befitting the stature of the situation and place it somewhere where such drudgery is acceptable, like I don't know... Palmerston North? (A bad joke really and I do feel a bit bad about it!!)


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