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Wednesday, 20 March 2019 08:58 am

Street artists encouraging others to explore street art that is Kiwi

May 12th, 2018 | By | Category: Latest News, News

A star map full of native birds, Maori culture and other things deemed important to New Zealand brought Wellington’s Ghuznee Street’s pavements alive – in tape.

The artwork called Celestia Zealantis created by Erica Duthie and Struan Ashby using tape is the latest in a long list of public space art by the couple.

They were inspired for their CubaDupa Festival project by the ideas of local poets, wordsmiths and people from all different cultures, about what they think Aotearoa should be celebrating.

“Culture is something that we can claim and own and keep fresh and playful,” says Erica.

The duo did some research about the process of naming the night sky and New Zealand star maps.

In collaboration with ideas from creative people from the community, they created a large imaginary star chart with constellations relevant to our local skies.

“We are really passionate about bringing art to those who don’t feel assured and comfortable going into a culture space like a black box theatre or a white box gallery.”

“So if we can bring art into the street, everybody can have it.”

She says they love inspiring others to do their own art as much as they enjoy than sharing theirs.

“We venture and help others who want to get into the field.”

“We are hoping for a new generation of street artists and visual artists that get into the idea that we can use our own cities as our canvases.”

“I mean, how cool is that?”

Erica says anybody has the ability to get legal permission to create art in public space.

“The first time you go through the permit process you have to jump through hoops, but once you know how to do it, it’s easier the next time.”

When the two were invited to create an installation at Cuba Street carnival in 2011, their initial thoughts went straight to how unpredictable the weather is in Wellington.

“It’s dodgy and there is no guaranteed weather window,” Erica says.

They were worried about how their art would hold up through the event, so they came up with a way to combat the weather.

“We thought why don’t we get Recycle PVC advertising billboard skin and do some art on that, worst case scenario, we have something.”

The duo did a lot of freestyling in the past, but have found it’s more practical to pre-paint the pieces, and in doing so they found a love for researching and creating the concepts that they take pride in.

You can find them on Facebook at Tape Art New Zealand and also find out all about them and their work at






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