Sculpture in the park

Cabbage Tree

Tī kōuka. Photo by Tony Wills CC BY 3.0.

Stella Bull Park on Greytown’s Main Street will be the site of a 5 metre high, 4 tonne stylised tī kōuka, or cabbage tree, crafted in steel.

The sculpture will illustrate the history of tī kōuka as a significant food source for early settlers.

The park today is a community edible garden and the sculpture will stand on a site believed to be an early māra (garden).

This work is to be created in the workshop of Matarawa artist Niko Thomsen.

Thomsen graduated from Freie Kunststudienstaette Ottersberg, Bremen in Germany in 1993. He had work commissioned in 1995 for the International Welding Expo in Bremen. The 5 x 5 x 2.5 metre piece was made using Kloeckner Steel, is one of the largest steel producer in the northern hemisphere.

HIs first real job in Aotearoa after fruit and garlic picking was as a labourer in the prop department for The Lord of the Rings. He then worked as a technician at the Polytech in Petone, and then technician at the School of Architecture at Victoria University.
Thomsen exhibits around New Zealand and has commissions held in private collections.