Victor Procuta

b. 1929d. 2021

Also known as:

  • Viktoras Vaclovas Procuta

Victor Procuta was born in Vilkaviškis, Lithuania. Having fleed their homeland in the early 1940s, by the end of World War II the Procuta family had landed in an American refugee camp in Munich. They were held there until Aotearoa accepted them as emigres in 1949.

Settling in Dunedin but then moving to Auckland, Procuta was drawn to architecture working as a cadet draftsman before studying at the University of Auckland. It was at this time, while still a student, Procuta designed the Church of the Holy Cross, Henderson. Interested in the way arts and crafts could be integrated with the architecture, he worked with Louise Henderson who made the stained glass windows representing Saints Peter and Paul. The church was completed in 1960.

After graduating, marrying and working in various firms including briefly with South Auckland Education Board, Procuta travelled with his young family to the United States, where they remained till 1967.

Returning to Aotearoa, Procuta rejoined the South Auckland Education Board remaining with the organisation until it was disestablished in 1989. Out of this process the firm Five Plus One, consisting of Procuta, Steve Mrkusic, John Sexton, Brian Aish, Paul Trenwick and Warwick Kellaway, was formed. He remained with the firm until his retirement in the mid-1990s.

See also obituary from Waikato Times and description of 'Interview with Vic Procuta' at the National Library.

Milan Mrkusich, ‘Untitled (Stained glass windows above Vestibule)’ (1960), Church of the Holy Cross, Henderson, Tāmaki Makaurau Auckland

Image: Bronwyn Holloway-Smith, Public Art Heritage Aotearoa New Zealand, 2021