The brief: Photograph a landmark. You can capture all or part of it; place it in the foreground and make it your focal point; or include it in the background. We challenge you to surprise us, and to present the landmark through your eyes.
I live in rural New Zealand, in an old swamp where it is quite flat. We don’t have any of the wonders of the world in our neck of the woods. Landmarks are kinda few and far between in my immediate vicinity. So I had to head into town for something, while not a globally recognisable icon, locally folks would say – hey that’s that carving from down by the fire station, across the road from the pub.
I did think about using the old abandoned supermarket as this often gets used when directions are being given. “ok you go down past the old supermarket and then turn left at the T junction.” As an instruction this is pretty useless, because if you were familiar enough with the area to know about the old supermarket, then you wouldn’t need directions. But it is just an abandoned and not that old building that doesn’t have any redeeming features at all.
I thought about the clock tower and the controversy when it was painted blue, but it stands starkly in the middle of town and to be honest I didn’t want to be seen lying all over the pavement in the centre of town, trying to get the best shot of something everyone looks at but takes for granted. I shouldn’t be such a coward.
The carving on the other hand is pretty cool and begs to have its picture taken and is even related to gardening. Tamakae was a cultivator and provider. This says more about our community than the passing of time in an old building or a newish clock. It says we are rooted in this community that has stood for a very long time, longer than me – we have only been here seven years but feel like part of the fabric of something that is beyond us. We are where we are meant to be just as much as the original occupants. Cultures and heritages come together in this place and emerge as a somewhere to be proud of and a people to love belonging to.
This landmark may be a humble carving in the heart of a small community, but it marks this land as something wonderful.
You can find out more about Tamakae >HERE<