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tara iti SOS.

date. 31 October 2023

city. Pakiri Memorial Hall

form. Pop-Up Exhibition of illustrated texts by Sharley Haddon

In October 2021, I recorded Sharley Haddon talking about the extractive practice of sandmining and the impact it has had on the marine ecology in the Pakiri Beach area. She has walked this beach daily for the last 50 years and has witnessed the decline of shellfish and nesting birds in the area. She attributes this decline to the practice of sandmining that has taken place in the region since 1880. 


[please listen to her testimony by hovering cursor over the video] 

Sharley Haddon wrote 'Taraiti SOS'  as a satirical account of the plight of Fairy Terns at Pakiri in the face of on-going sand extraction. It is an illustrated text about the impact that sand mining has caused to the Fairy Terns, an iconic marine species found at Pakiri. Her work was displayed in the hall as a series of large scale posters that tells the story of 'Tara and Iti' who live on the beach and witness the impacts that sand mining is having on their lives.​ Taraiti is the Māori name for Fairy Terns.

'Taraiti SOS' formed part of 'Journey of Sand from Seabed to City' Schools Art Project. It was held at the Memorial Hall, Pakiri on Monday 31 Oct. 2022 from 10.00 until 16.00.


This exhibition took place during the final part of the 'Journey of Sand from Seabed to City' project by Alanah Knibb and Julia West that brought young people from the city together with members of the Pakiri community to creatively inform, explore, and discuss the extraction of sand from the seabed, its journey to the city, and how sand is used for construction.

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