News | 15 August 2023
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New mural pays tribute to local kaumātua June Jackson

Pōneke is celebrating the unveiling of a memorial mural honouring the life and contributions of esteemed Wellingtonian Whaea June Te Raumange Jackson MNZM.

Drone shot of June Jackson mural by Mr G on side of Shed 1 on waterfront with attendees at blessing in foreground
Crowd gathers at blessing of mural of June Jackson by Mr G

Whakawaiwai ana te tū a Taranaki, o kahu hukarere i huatau ai koe rā.

Huhia iho koe ki to parawai mā, o kahu taniko i tino pai rawa koe.

Me tipare koe ki te rau-kawakawa, he tohu aroha nui ki te iwi ka ngaro.

Waiho rā e Rangi, kia taria ake, ka tai mai he karere, E kore e hoki mai!

The artwork, created by internationally renowned artist Graham Hoete (Mr G), adorns Shed 1 along the city's iconic waterfront, serving as a lasting tribute to a remarkable woman who dedicated her life to the betterment of Wellington and its residents.

Aunty June Jackson was known for her unparalleled dedication and service to the community, dignitaries, and the wider society. Her extensive portfolio of work encompassed a wide variety of spheres, ranging from her instrumental role in organising major cultural events, to her advocacy for social justice and community empowerment.

As a tribute to June's immeasurable contributions, Wellington City Council awarded June the Absolutely Positively Wellingtonian Award in 2017.

As Wellington City Council’s Tātai Heke Māori Karepa Wall recalls, June Jackson was a true luminary in our community, tirelessly working to enrich the lives of Wellingtonians.

“She was integral in welcoming dignitaries worldwide, showcasing our city's vibrant culture and hospitality. Her work extended far beyond official events, as she dedicated herself to numerous social projects, ensuring that the wider community had access to opportunities and resources. Her legacy continues to inspire us all.”

“This mural adds significance as New Zealand and Australia co-host the FIFA Women’s World Cup 2023™. June Jackson, a beacon of empowerment and inspiration for women, aligns perfectly with the spirit of this monumental sporting event. Her legacy serves as a reminder of the strides women have made in various fields, including sports, and the impact they continue to have on society,” adds Karepa.

This project is the final in a series of murals made possible thanks to funding from the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment as part of its work to leverage the FIFA Women’s World Cup 2023™ and to create a lasting legacy for Aotearoa New Zealand and our communities.

Tūmanako 2.0 was a project to create six large-scale murals by Mr G in collaboration with young female artists, to celebrate past, current and future generations of wāhine Māori and indigenous athletes. 

It has also been a collaborative effort with Wellington City Council and WellingtonNZ serving as another example of Council’s dedication to working with our Tākai Here partners to bring Tūpiki Ora, our Māori wellbeing strategy to life in our city.

Mayor Tory Whanau, in expressing her admiration for the tribute, says: "June Jackson's legacy is woven into the fabric of our city. Her contributions have touched the lives of countless Wellingtonians, and this mural by Mr G beautifully encapsulates her spirit. This mural will be a constant reminder of June's positive impact on our community."

In working with the whānau of June, with son Peter Jackson in particular, Mr G was able to use his artistry to ensure the art resonates deeply with the Wellington community and beyond as he masterfully portrays June's unwavering commitment and impact.

Karepa adds that June's dedication to our Māori community and her efforts in promoting Māori culture has been truly transformative.

“The mural honours her work and is a tribute to the enduring relationship between our city and its indigenous people."