Hamilton Gardens Mural


Derek Kerwood

Megan Godfrey



  • Carving


  • Wood


  • H3000 x W5000 X D80mm

Derek Kerwood & Megan Godfrey, ‘Hamilton Garden Mural’ (1998, Hamilton Gardens, Kirikiriroa Hamilton

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


The large mural was carved from a felled Camphor Laurel (Cinnamomum camphora) that had been growing on the Waikato riverbank at Grey Street in Hamilton East. The artists were inspired by the Hamilton Gardens and decided to make and donate a carving specifically for this site.

The mural depicts both real life and imagined elements of Hamilton Gardens and took over 7000 hours to carve: an unpaid 'labour of love' for the carvers. Each carver worked independently in their own studios, but met often to compare notes and to ensure consistency between panels. Emphasis was given to capturing the interest of children through fantasy and creatures, animals and plant-life. The result features intricately carved flora and fauna and mythical creatures of the forest. It is now behind glass in its original location, and well signposted on the exterior of the building.

[Text adapted from in-situ plaque]