Karl Poland 2 The Otehei Bay Jetty Take Over

  • Tauira / Student
    Karl Poland
  • Kaiako / Lecturer
    Anthony Hoete
  • School
    The University of Auckland

As part of a live project for Project Island Song, with key stakeholders being: Ngati Kuta and Patukeha hapū, DoC and the Guardians of the Bay of Islands, this project was a radical response to the brief of a “focal point” on Urupukapuka Island.

The Otehei Bay Jetty Take Over rejects junking the landscape, instead the architecture clings onto the existing jetty structure in the heart of Otehei Bay. The form is conceptually derived from the woolshed, the kiwi bach and the whare. In other words: New Zealand's fixation over the gable roof and eaves architecture. However, the programme is not a woolshed, bach or whare. The intervention is instead an unavoidable threshold upon entry to Urupukapuka Island acting as an island terminal, an information gauntlet and a linear tourist briefing.

The Approach

Visitors step off the Fuller$ ferry and are confronted by a series of politically and satirically charged signage scattered across the jetty. Animatronic and road signs allude to Kiwiana and the presence of old New Zealand.

A: Entry / Exit

Entry / Exit exposes the over engineered timber framework of the architecture and appears as a shed stripped of its corrugated iron cloak. Go up the ramp and enter through a hijacked farm gate door which leads to a floor constructed from a cattle grid.

B: Wash Ya Boots

Wash Ya Boots acts as biosecurity for Urupukapuka Island and reinterprets the custom of removing your footwear. A scrubber and spray bottle are hung with number 8 wire and the space is enclosed by a cage-like enclosure filled with Urupukapuka sea shells, indicating the arrival by sea.

C: Aotearoa’s Melting Pot

Aotearoa’s Melting Pot juxtaposes projections of pre-colonial and post-colonial imagery of Urupukapuka Island onto woven flax screens. The projections are cast upon visitors to the island, acting as a bombarding of the island’s history.

D: A Deafening Dawn Chorus

A Deafening Dawn Chorus is silent upon entry, a reference to the first Europeans describing New Zealand’s bird song as being “deafening”. Cassette players and headphones are hung from the structure to obstruct and intrigue visitors. Each species on the island is assigned a tape and the space is enclosed by a cage-like enclosure filled with clippings of Manuka / Kanuka.

E: The Island Gallery

The Island Gallery acts as an exhibition space for Project Island Song, DoC, and local iwi / hapū, but it is not like a traditional gallery. The white walls of your average art gallery are stripped away, revealing views of the island. Media is hung out like on a washing line. A koha box sits in the centre of the space to promote supporting locals. The exit door is embossed with “shut the gate, mate!” and visitors then explore the island.

The final proposal was presented as 600x1400mm of printed mixed media and a 400x800x1000mm ish found object model.

This project was completed in my third year of study at the University of Auckland School of Architecture and Planning. (Semester 1, 2021)