Mayor looking to commission new artwork

Western Bay Mayor Garry Webber has a blank space on his office wall in need of filling. Photo: Ryan Wood.

Western Bay of Plenty District Mayor Garry Webber is looking for a local artist to help decorate the mayoral office.

He's putting up $1500 of his own money to commission a new painting, which will hang in his office for the duration of his mayoralty.

“I want it to represent the three iwi of the Western Bay of Plenty, and to recognise where we come from.”

He says it doesn't matter if the person is an up-and-coming artist or an experienced professional – the decision will be made on the quality of the piece.

Helping the mayor make his decision is Creative Bay of Plenty, which will be receiving submissions on his behalf. The artwork should be roughly one square metre in size, and the general meaning of the artwork should revolve around the concept of working together. It should also reflect the culture of the Western Bay.

Garry himself has a large art collection, including pieces inspired by Maori culture that already decorate his office. He has a strong interest in the history of the region, and believes more can be done to promote it.

“I went to Otumoetai Primary School and Tauranga Boys' College, and we were made aware of our history. But I don't think many of the modern generation know how Tauranga came to be today.”

Artists interested in submitting a proposal should send a visual representation of their idea, one paragraph explaining how their submission incorporates the brief, and a single-page CV to Creative Bay of Plenty, 95 Willow St, Tauranga 3110, or email

Deadline for submissions is September 30.


@Murray Guy

Posted on 19-09-2017 16:14 | By Papamoaner

With respect Murray (and I DO respect you for good work you have done), your response takes me back to my first post ie;- You are assuming a lot. I would be very surprised if Garry doesn't leave the artwork on the wall. How else would an intelligent man behave in that situation in an ocean of eyes? and he will already have pondered all angles before the pitbulls started up, baying in advance for the prospective red stuff. In fact, if you'll excuse the expletive, I'll bet a pound to a knob of goatshit that it stays! If I'm eventually proved wrong, I'll send you a bottle of whisky (I know you won't forget, but you might have to remind me)

With respect Murray the gesture,

Posted on 19-09-2017 10:45 | By R. Bell

is in Garry commissioning a local artist to do the work. Didn't have to do it, could have gone elsewhere, but he has DONE IT, VERY RARE in local politics as you well know. Good on Garry I say. Robin Bell.

Papamoaner, what gesture?

Posted on 18-09-2017 23:20 | By Murray.Guy

The Mayor has a number of artworks, appreciates art, values an understanding of our local history ... yes, all good and a man after my own heart in these areas. Offers up $1500 for a metre square original art piece to hang in his office (while he still occupies it). Where's the 'nice gesture'? Doesn't say so BUT if the art is to be gifted to the community, that's a 'nice gesture'. Papamoaner, a few of us aren't in anyone's pocket, have no interest in 'brown nosing', have experience and insight in to reality. It is good and healthy that on occasion the lights are turned on, the mask removed! As an aside and on a more positive note, I have been pleasantly surprised at the effort Mayor Garry Webber has made, quietly supporting local Iwi commemorations and events.


Posted on 18-09-2017 16:46 | By comfortablynumb

I suggest you get off your laziboy and realise that the WBOP has the highest rates in the country. Judging by your username you may live under the jurisdiction of Tauranga District Council not WBOP and if you do live in Papamoa you don't have to fork out for the ridiculous rates we have this side of the Wairoa River.

Thanks Garry

Posted on 18-09-2017 09:34 | By Papamoaner

Nice gesture. The majority of us take it as being genuine.

The mind boggles

Posted on 18-09-2017 09:31 | By Papamoaner

Who the hell would want to be mayor in this shark pit? I happen to know he's a decent man trying to do a good job. It would be easy to say Tauranga is a cynical nasty place, but we need to realise these derogatory characters who see ulterior motive in anything anyone does, are a very small minority who fit together into an insignificant walnut shell, primarily to throw dung and look for the worst in their fellow citizens. Some of it is of course, just sour grapes.

agree with Murray Guy and Miss Adventure

Posted on 17-09-2017 18:51 | By old trucker

You are both dead right,that other guy can say some horrible words about you Murray,anyway , i enjoy reading both your comments ,and look forward to more ahead, GO Murray, and MISS ADVENTURE,AWESOME, as is Sunlive who WON above everyone else for BEST NEWS, thats AWESOME, Sunlive ,Thankyou, and 10-4 out, phew.

...and the answer is ?

Posted on 17-09-2017 17:35 | By comfortablynumb

Just put a mirror up Garry

The Emperor is dead, long live the emperor

Posted on 17-09-2017 16:54 | By stokey

He has clearly been contaminated by his office, just like all all his predecessors. Promises to watch all spending, by this, the highest rated local body in the country, have gone the way of all promises by these local body egotists. Has he got nothing else to concern himself with than adding to the art works in his office? Get real for once and do the job you were elected to do. Save the hard pressed rate payers in WBOP from your 'over the top' rates! The 'fake' news, accompanying the rates demands are fooling nobody!

Mayors office

Posted on 17-09-2017 14:44 | By MISS ADVENTURE

The most activity in the triannual period will be to conjure up a picture to the end of term and then it will all end. There will not be a lot of other activity going on until then. The CEO and otehrs will run riot through the place as usual. God save the Ratepayer, as no one esle wants to!

@ Papps

Posted on 17-09-2017 14:42 | By MISS ADVENTURE

Welcome VI, please dont overload with to many threads. God save the Ratepayer, as no one else wants to!

Suck up?

Posted on 17-09-2017 13:45 | By Papamoaner

Look out everybody - the village idiot has entered the room

Suck up session

Posted on 17-09-2017 11:50 | By MISS ADVENTURE

Hope does not last more than two years to go.


Posted on 17-09-2017 11:11 | By Papamoaner

You're assuming a lot there Murray.

Opps, read all story.

Posted on 17-09-2017 10:00 | By Murray.Guy

First thought was, "Not the only blank space in the Mayor's office", followed by, "Hey, nice gesture, a donation to the Council and it's history perhaps."Then I read, ... 'He's putting up $1500 of his own money to commission a new painting, which will hang in his office for the duration of his mayoralty.' ... WOW! his own money. I should hope so as clearly when he goes the painting goes with him! Reminded me of the Gareth Morgan offer of 'Street Art' outside his home on Marine Parade, required a few of our pohutukawa to be removed and the Sculpture remained his property to go with him should he sell.

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