Lonnie Hutchinson

Star (Mound). Headland Sculpture on the Gulf 2015

Choose a theme


Copy (Ctrl C) the code below

For Headlands Sculpture on the Gulf 2015 I am making a platform based on the structural and conceptual architecture of the star mounds found on the island of Savaii. These ancient mounds are made of earth and stone and are found in the Samoa Islands and other islands in the Pacific.

The mounds in Savaii were constructed 900 years ago at the time of Tongan occupation. There are over 300 mounds recorded and archaeologists suspect there are many more covered in ferns and "mile a minute" weed yet to be discovered. The carbon dating indicates the oldest mounds tested so far were constructed between 700 AD, to 1100 AD, 900 years ago. These dates are also around the time of the Tongan occupation.

In contemporary Samoa plantation workers state that the mounds were used for the chiefly sport of Pigeon-catching. The pigeon was known to be the representation of a number of Samoan mythological entities. Several studies in social anthropology and archaeology have produced rich and productive theories of ritual and metaphor that can be used in understanding myth, religion, and metaphor. Samoan mythology and cultural expressions reference the ritual of pigeon-catching (a chieftain sport) on the mound and magical rituals to cure illnesses.

I'm interested in the ideas associated with manmade physical constructs or architectural monuments in the landscape and the relationships between people and these constructions within the physical and spiritual realm.

I have employed the expertise of Tongan Stonemason Vasini Fisilau and his crew to construct from my drawings the star mound. The rays or projections of the design are based on the Crux constellation commonly known as the Southern Cross. Mounds with five projections in Samoa are believed to have a relationship with the stars and planets

The star mounds dimensions are 10m x 5m with a depth of 250mm, the public are encouraged to walk and sit on the surface, and it will be built out of the local stone Stoney Gold which is quarried on Waiheke Island.

I will work alongside Vasini and his crew (as much as Tongan/Samoan cultural etiquette will allow for a female) to learn the laws and ways of stone culture from a Tongan perspective. The process of selecting the stones and building the star mound follows a strict cultural code where I will switch from the artist, to the student and back again several times throughout this unique experience.

Waiheke Island is a perfect space/place and gives the work some context in that it complements the historical underpinnings of my research and furthers my understanding of sacred spaces in a contemporary context. Star (Mound), is a platform where one can walk, sit or lay, contemplate, reflect and meditate and a place if you feel inclined to re-connect with ones spiritual self and the universe.

I invite you to join me on this unique journey and support the making of this artwork for all to share. I will keep you updated and included in the process with regular updates including video and photographs.

UPDATES

  • Star (Mound)

    32 MONTHS AGO

    Yay thanks to everyone that donated to this project!

    Ia manuia

    Nga mihi

    Lonnie

  • Star (Mound)

    32 MONTHS AGO

    Star (Mound)
  • Star (Mound)

    32 MONTHS AGO

    Good morning

    The Star (Mound) is complete. Yay!

    What an amazing experience it has been. We had plenty of visitors to site during the build and it was great to talk with them about the work.

    Thanks to Ross at the Kayak hire nextdoor who helped out with his limited water supply and let us have access to his long drop - THANK YOU!

    Thanks to Vasini and the boys, I am absolutely thrilled with the finished work.

    A heads up - on the 23 Jan in the early evening there will be over an hour of performances around the Star (Mound) and John Ioane's Tangaroa's, including poetry, dancing, chanting and singing which acknowledges the ancient stories imbued in these sculptures.  More to come on Monday as we finalise the programme.

    I am still quite away off my target and I need your help to achieve it.  Please donate to Star (Mound) and share my campaign with others and help spread the word.

    Thanks and talk soon

    Lonnie

     

     

     

  • Star (Mound)

    32 MONTHS AGO

    Star (Mound)
  • Star (Mound)

    32 MONTHS AGO

    Star (Mound)
  • Star (Mound)

    32 MONTHS AGO

    Star (Mound)
  • Star (Mound)

    32 MONTHS AGO

  • Star (Mound)

    32 MONTHS AGO

    Star (Mound)
  • Star (Mound)

    32 MONTHS AGO

    Star (Mound)
  • Star (Mound)

    32 MONTHS AGO

    Star (Mound)
  • Star (Mound)

    32 MONTHS AGO

    Kia ora everyone

    Install has started and my apolygies for not posting in the weekend, very early starts and long days under a very hot sun put this artist in bed very early!

    Saturday

    Once Vasini's truck and van arrived by Sealink we met at the site for Star (Mound). Which is on the waterfront at Matiatia, 3min walk from the wharf. The stone masons set up and then with their spikes and string mapped out the design on the ground. Dan and I put the gazebo up to shelter everyone during breaks and keep the water and food out of the sun.

     

    Sunday

    We selected the stone and made our way to site and Vasini and his crew started. They chipped away at the football size stones to make them fit into the pattern - much like a jigsaw puzzle.

    We had several visitors on Sunday, including Elena Lome and Tipi my dog, Nina Tonga Curator of Pacific Cultures from Te Papa and her sister Ane. Lucky we had a gazebo up to shelter our visitors as it was a vey hot day.

     

     

     

    Star (Mound)
  • Star (Mound)

    32 MONTHS AGO

    Tommorow we start work on site. I'll be taking photos and posting pics of the day here on Boosted, Facebook, twitter and Instagram - LON_DONNA

    If your around come visit us on site.

    Talk soon

    Lonne  

  • Star (Mound)

    32 MONTHS AGO

    Star (Mound)
  • Star (Mound)

    32 MONTHS AGO

    Star (Mound)
  • Star (Mound)

    32 MONTHS AGO

    Yesterdays site visit on Waiheke

    It was a beautiful morning on the harbour and Vasini and myself were on way to Waiheke Island for a recky to organise and confirm all aspects of the build of Star(Mound).

    Malo e lelei to Fisilau Stonemason Ltd who share my passion for making objects and by greatly reducing their fee are working with me to realise this project. Malo lava!  

    A shout out to Graham Clark of Stoneyridge quarry for there generous sponsorship of the main material 'stoney gold' the only stone on Waiheke. Good on you!

    Another shout out to Jackie Obrien and the team at SOTG for your support with site logistics, sponsorship and all the finer details!

    Big Ups to Daniel Rogers, long time friend and a local who is assisting me with logistics/administration/accomodation and our driver on the island. 

    Talk soon

    Lonnie

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Star (Mound)