PatupaiareheThe Mural - Patuparairehe


Buck Nin



  • Painting


  • Acrylic paint
  • Mixed Media
  • Board


  • Each panel (5) H2220 x W1220mm. Total: H2220 x W6400mm

Buck Nin (Ngāti Raukawa, Ngāti Toa), ‘Patupairehe’(1992), MSB – Waikato Management School (Room 1.30), University of Waikato, Kirikiriroa Hamilton

Image: Bronwyn Holloway-Smith, Public Art Heritage Aotearoa New Zealand, 2022


When discussing this mural, Buck Nin suggested that it "depicts the notion that no organisation or institution can stand alone, apart and in isolation from the community itself. The organisation is shown in the mural as being the marae but it could equally be viewed as any modern-day organisation." Nin went on to describe the "mischievous activities" of patupaiarehe (mythical people who live in the bush on mountains) within institutions: "They tend to frustrate the best of intentions and invade from within to cause chaos and confusion. It is up to us to guard and protect those values we uphold, thereby constantly reviewing where we stand on new issues confronting society."

Locating the mural within the School of Management Studies, Nin stated: "The triangles in the mural are symbols of the institution: the marae, the University, the Trustbank. All must be part and parcel of the community rather than isolated castles immersed in their respective spheres of expertise. The University of Waikato School of Management Studies has close community and business ties and the skills, talents and expertise have over the years benefited the Waikato region. The mural symbolises the co-operative effort each must play to build a better nation freed from ignorance, intolerance and apathy. "

~ Source: University of Waikato Art Collection