NZ artist Mr G inspires rangatahi by painting murals of iconic wāhine from the Football Ferns

NZ artist Mr G inspires rangatahi by painting murals of iconic wāhine from the Football Ferns

"It’s about strengthening the identity of our rangatahi.”

Internationally renowned artist Mr G, aka Graham Hoete, is back in action with his latest project, Tūmanako 2.0. And trust me, team, this is definitely something you’ll wanna head along to.

Tūmanako 2.0 is an exciting project celebrating the FIFA Women's World Cup 2023 and all the incredible wahine toa of past and present and future athletes.

Mr G, along with a group of talented young female artists from small-town communities across the nation, will be painting six breathtaking murals to honour these sporting legends.

The man himself joined the Mai Home Run to chat about what the project is all about, and why it means so much to him to create such meaningful pieces of art.

“My wife and I started the Tūmanako project which is all about painting murals of hope throughout our small town communities throughout the country.”

He continued: “Collaborating with the young people in our small-town communities and painting murals of hope that have a contextual style in relation to the traditional iwi stories of each particular rohe. So, it’s about strengthening the identity of our rangatahi.”

Now, why is this project so special? First of all, it's an opportunity for these budding wahine artists to shine on a grand scale. 

Mr G wants to put the spotlight on their remarkable talent and give them the recognition they deserve. 

And let's not forget the main goal: inspiring rangatahi and tamariki by allowing them to see themselves represented in these awe-inspiring spaces.

The action has already kicked off in Auckland, folks! Mr G has brushed his magic strokes on the "Aotearoa Legends Wall" at Eden Park, paying tribute to the one and only Amber Hearn, a true football legend of Aotearoa. 

In our chat with Mr G, he said: “She’s a Kiwi football legend. She’s the highest point scorer in New Zealand history (male and female), so I painted a portrait of her as part of my legend's honour wall.”

He continued: “Our recent one for the FIFA [Women's World Cup 2023], we finished one of Grace Jale in Waikato where she’s from as well. I had a young girl, Rhiannon from Ōpōtiki, she came and helped me paint that particular mural and it was awesome!”

“It’s about supporting our players and supporting our rangatahi, giving them the opportunity to be a part of something really cool and global, such as the FIFA Women’s World Cup.”

Don’t panic if you’ve missed any of the action – the creativity could be making its way to your part of the motu.

The live art events will be kicking off in Auckland, Wellington and Dunedin starting this week. 

Auckland – The Cloud: July 20th
Mural is of: Football Fern, Malia Steinmetz
Rangatahi painting with Mr G is: Jade Smith from Nelson   

Wellington – Shed 6: July 25th
Mural is of: Football Fern, Paige Satchell 
Rangatahi painting with Mr G is: Te Waiotu Fairlie from Tokomaru Bay   

Dunedin – Otago University Carpark: July 30th
Mural is of: Claudia Bunge 
Rangatahi painting with Mr G is: Hineteaio Brown from Kaitaia  

Wellington – Shed 1: August 7-11

Get ready to be blown away by the talent, passion, and artistry that will be on full display at Tūmanako 2.0. It's a celebration of sports, culture, and the power of creativity.