Rangatahi Art Competition Opens – 10 September 2023


“He Whakapaparanga Toi, He Oranga Tonutanga.”

“The story in our artwork, reflects the ongoing wellbeing,
survival and sustenance of our people.”



A big THANK YOU to all artists and voters in 2021 for supporting the Rangatahi Art Competition.

We were impressed with the artwork entries which were very creative, highlighting a range of  wellness approaches for rangatahi.   You can see the entries below.


Lydia Asalemo

IWI:        Ngapuhi

AGE:       15

TITLE:     The Rooms

Everything I feel and say about myself. Everything that happens, all mentally draining. But even so, I smile through it all, because even though everything is just an illusion, I hope and know it will get better.

Pia Huxtable

IWI:      Mōkai Pātea, Ngai Tahu, Ngāti Raukawa au ki te tonga

AGE:       16

TITLE:    Bringing me home

“Wellness for me is being connected intrinsically to my whenua and my sense of home and whānau!
This art depicts that even at times where I might find my self (in texture) absorbed amongst the dark I know that I can always be brought back out to what really matters for me and this is Home. This landscape is based on the view that I see when driving home from Papaioea from school back to Utiku in the Rangitīkei and the view I see as I come down the Mangaweka deviation to see our whānau whenua with the Ruahine ranges in the back and knowing that our awa Rangitīkei, Hautapu and Moawhango are just over the crest of the light!!”

Oshiania Lomas-Tane

IWI:         Ngāpuhi, Te Arawa, Ngāti Pikiao, Ngāti Maniapoto

AGE:       18

TITLE:  Niwareka

Tēnei ahau e whakanui ana i tā Niwareka kōrero me tōna oranga i te ao kiko me te ao tūroa ki te titonga peita nei. I riro i ahau taku mataora i ngā tau tata nei. Whai muri i rongo ahau i ngā piki me ngā heke i ngā whakaaro o tēnā, o tenā nā taku pakeke me ngā āhuatanga katoa o te moko kauwae. I wānanga mātou ko tōku whānau i mua, ā, kaore he paku aha ki ahau ēnā kōrero ngau kino nei. Mohio ahau i tōku ao Māori, ā, ko Ngāpuhi tēnei e tū tonu ana.

Te Rau o Te Huia Kouratoras

IWI:        Tainui, Te Rarawa, Te Aupouri

AGE:       18

TITLE:    Kia mahea te hinengaro

This piece was created during lockdown to inspire tauira to get out in amongst nature and connect with Papatuuaanuku. It’s been a difficult year and I wanted to promote health and well-being amongst my peers.

Jacob Wynyard

IWI:        Ngāti Wai

AGE:       16

TITLE:  Peace

Serenity to oneself and others

Makereta Minhinnick

IWI:        Ngāti Porou, Tuwharetoa, Ngaāi Takihiku, Ngāti Tipa

AGE:        14

TITLE:     The View

On the beach with my family, we had a good time and it was a good view. We were in level 3 in Auckland at the time. It really helped all our well-being to be out at the beach, picking pipi and enjoying the sun.

Makayla Read

IWI:         Ngāti Kahungunu

AGE:       16

TITLE:    Hauora in my eyes

This artwork is a representation of what wellbeing means from a teenagers perspective. Each character is talking about what wellbeing (Hauora) means to them, so I talked to a few of my peers to get some ideas and picked out the main points they brought up that I agreed with. This then got me thinking about what attributes I could include into my characters and they are my strength in artworks, and so tried my best to create them with diverse features that teenagers can share a voice with.

Iona Greville

IWI:        Tainui, Te Rarawa, Te Aupouri

AGE:       17

TITLE:  Me, Myself and I; We can make it

“What does well being and wellness mean to me?
When I can finally look in the mirror and truly believe that even with all my struggles I am still enough to make it.”

Dalziel Maeva

IWI:          Ngāti Tūwharetoa (ki Taupō)

AGE:        13

TITLE:     Create Destroy Restore

I am on the Autistic Spectrum so life is very visual for me. When I think about how I deal with my own being this is what comes to mind. My current feelings and emotions are Created, they can be Destroyed by events out of my control but then I use Te Ao Maori and my tupuna to Restore my well being and bring balance, this is the neverending circulation of my wairua.

Ngahuia Maeva

IWI:          Tūwharetoa

AGE:        16

TITLE:    He aroha whakato, He aroha puta mai

To be surrounded by aroha, and to feel the Mauri of my tupuna around me, part of me right to the depths of my ngakau and wairua.

Lyric Minhinnick-Ellis

IWI:        Ngāti Te Ata

AGE:        13

TITLE:    Love Yourself

Your greatest responsibility is to love yourself and to know you are enough

Tuti Minhinnick

IWI:        Ngāti Porou, Tuwharetoa, Ngaāi Takihiku, Ngāti Tipa

AGE:        14

TITLE:     Healthy Meal

Cooking breakfast helps my well-being because I feel satisfied, energized throughout the day when I have a good breakfast. I prepare my meals to keep me on track and to have something to look forward to in the morning.

Sereyvatana Samedy

IWI:          Cambodian 

AGE:        17

TITLE:     What does well-being look like?

Everyone has got a different opinion about well-being. To me, well-being is like a core is that is going through and around your head. Those cores represent your life . Lets say if one of the cores are broken, it will lose it balance and will affect other core too, and you likely won’t feel as well as you want to.

Rongo Minhinnick

IWI:        Ngāti Porou

AGE:        17

TITLE:    Tree of What and Who Makes Me Happy

3 years ago I went to counselling for over a year because I struggled to express my feelings but this tree represents all the people and whom have made my life both easier to manage and deal with. The green leaves represent people who have helped with my mental health. The red leaves are things I like to do in my spare time. The branches are things I want to experience/have in the future. The fence is hobby’s. The dirt is facts about me. 

Aimee Stent

IWI:          –

AGE:        17

TITLE:     Recycled

I used paper mache glue to create this masterpiece. it has words of life and happiness. A colourful piece of art. A unique piece that upcycles my doddles and class notes. Made with love.

Cassidy Bell

IWI:          Ngāpuhi, Ngāti Pāoa

AGE:        16

TITLE:      Write a Love Letter to Yourself

In this day and age, there is so much emphasis on the love we give to others- whether it be in the form of hugs, wisdom, empathy, sweet messages, flowers, and so many more. There is this desire to constantly please others, even if it comes at the cost of our own well-being. This piece, ‘Write a Love Letter to Yourself’, is intended to challenge the view that we must put others needs before our own. By writing a love letter to ourselves, we come to understand the importance of self-worth and the empowerment that comes with being grounded in one’s own identity. This isn’t art, it’s a raw, honest confrontation. Who are you? Where do you stand within yourself? If by chance, you had written a love letter to yourself, what would it say?

Cassidy Bell

IWI:          Ngāpuhi, Ngāti Pāoa

AGE:        16

TITLE:      Who I Am vs Who Society Wants Me To Be

Who am I if not defined by your labels? Everything we know, everyone we love, is compartmentalised, labelled and filed away like nameless documents lost in the system. Our world is corrupt with the Western idea that human value and worth can be measured by things such as ethnicity, sexuality, gender, religion, social status and political stance. There is this idea enforced on the nation as a whole that power, wealth and WORTH come from being white, cisgender, heterosexual, christian and male. This is so, so wrong. These labels as we call them, are a Western construct to segregate people and hide inequity and oppression behind ‘science’ and ‘law’. It’s all a lie. Your worth as a human being is not- better yet, cannot be- defined by the colour of your skin, what religion you practice, who you’re attracted to or what gender you are. These are baseless, insignificant values. What matters more is morality, spirituality, connection to the earth and to the people. Do you know who you are? Better yet, who are you without Western labels? Do you know the answer?

Cassidy Bell

IWI:          Ngāpuhi, Ngāti Pāoa

AGE:        16

TITLE:       Shameless 

Wellbeing looks like confidence, in my body, in my mind, in what I stand for and where I come from. Wellbeing looks like peace, spirituality, hope and passion. Wellbeing looks like a baby koru sprouting up in between the roots of tall kauri trees. It’s the sense of being grounded, of coming home, of having a place of belonging. Wellbeing is a feeling, a state of mind even, that we all strive for, conscious or not. It’s the feeling of ultimate, pure freedom.

Macoyha Baker-mau

IWI:          Ngāti Tautahi, Ngātihine, Hokianga

AGE:        16

TITLE:       Reality of Wellbeing A Rangatahi Perspective

As a rangatahi myself this is what well-being is like in NZ.  Yes, I could have chosen a fairytale version but no.  A Wahine Māori representing her culture with a Moko Kauae.  The words are pouring on her as they represent mental health issues that run deep in her blood.  There are also tips on how to help a healthy wellbeing.

Anna Pullan

IWI:         Ngāpuhi

AGE:        13

TITLE:  My Wellbeing Monster

The creature outline of the drawing represents me as a person and the stuff inside is what makes me happy.

Charlotte Lubransky

IWI:        Ngāti Pākehā

AGE:        16

TITLE:  Anei tātou nā ko te pō, anā tātou nā he rā ki tua.

This whakatauki, ‘Anei tātou nā ko te pō, anā tātou nā he rā ki tua’, inspired my artwork. It reminded me that there is always an end to our darkest moments. When everything feels too heavy, we must remember we are on our way to a new day. Though this sounds so hard to comprehend at the moment, if you hold on, the sun will rise again.

Kyra Hope-Johnstone

IWI:        Ngāti Ruanui

AGE:        18

TITLE:    Hidden Underneath

Bad wellbeing is a high cost to individuals, which is why I chose to go in this direction of the topic. My art work represents how our wellbeing is being further undermined by the aspects of our modern life (loss of community and isolation) and how poorly the media communicate this. My art includes watercolour paint, newspaper and ink. I have included newspaper and ink into my art work to represent the media. To further communicate how poorly they talk about wellbeing, I have burnt holes into the drawing of the girl and the newspaper underneath.

Ngaikiha Tupaea

IWI:        Tainui

AGE:        17

TITLE:    Surrender

“This piece was developed to represent bottled-up emotions and how we feel that we cant express or reveal anything to anyone. it’s supposed to be a journey of us finally opening up and allowing ourselves to sub come to our emotions to finally heal. once we finally seek help and face our emotions we can finally release and embrace the emotions we lost along the way. in a way, we are surrendering to our issues and letting ourselves flow through the healing process instead of hiding and avoiding it.
in surrendering we are finally free”.

Nataliah Kingi

IWI:        Ngāti Kahu o Torongare

AGE:        17

TITLE:    Dancing Frogs

This artwork was drawn because I believe that the people you surround yourself with, no matter good or bad, they will make an effort to keep you around and keep you smiling or just keeping your mind distracted from all chaos around you. They are dancing because in every dance there are moves/obstacles.  These may be hard to figure out or understand in the beginning, however with someone by their side helping them figure it out, it turns into a beautiful dance that is balanced and meaningful.  I used frogs instead if people because frogs are a symbol of many things but most importantly harmony and peace.

Toreakore Ford-takiri

IWI:        Ngāti Raukawa

AGE:        14

TITLE:    Wellbeing?

What wellbeing looks like to me

Winning Artworks 2021

Te Tohu Kairangi : Artistic Excellence Award ($300 prize each)

“Surrender” by Ngaikiha Tupaea

“Niwareka” by Oshiania Lomas-Tane      

Te Tohu a te Hāpori : People’s Choice Awards ($300 1st prize, $150 2nd prize)

“Love Yourself” by Lyric Minhinnick-Ellis

“Wellbeing Monster” by Anna Pullan

Te Tohu Toi Whakaihiihi : Inspiring Artworks ($150 prize each)

“Hauora in our eyes” by Makayla Read  

“Create Destroy Restore” by Dalziel Maeva

“Who I am vs Who society wants me to be” by Cassidy Bell

*Winning artworks from Te Tohu Kairangi : The Artistic Excellence Award

Competition Awards Video

Due to Covid, the awards were announced online. A video presentation was created from the judges.    

Awards Presented by:  Te Aumihi Hohepa (presenter), Artist Announcements By: DLT, Andrea Hopkins, Reuben Friend, Miriama Grace-Smith, Charlotte Graham, Te Rawhitiroa Bosch & Tame Iti.

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