This was Katikati’s first ‘cooperative’ mural – the list of people who painted the 98 ceramic tiles at the Fruits of Katikati Festival, November 2002, is featured alongside.
The design was pre-drawn by June Carlton, project coordinator for Katikati Open-Air Art, and inspired by the colourful pukeko which is part of our natural history. The art work then had to be printed, magnified and measured off into 98 squares, matching the size of the ceramic tiles. Committee members painstakingly drew the outline on each tile.
At the festival, a whole range of would-be artists, from children to grandparents, paid $5 to paint a tile and be part of the project. Ross Benson of Chelsea Crafts then fired the tiles but a delay in finding a suitable wall meant the mural was not erected until 14 months after the festival.
Pukeko Kid has since become Open-Air Art’s icon around town, pointing the way to places of interest.