The name Te Pou is derived from Te pou herenga waka (the waka mooring post). It acknowledges the rich waka and seafaring history of Tāmaki Makaurau (Auckland) and the Waitematā, where many ancient Māori waka once traversed and moored near the current Auckland CBD and waterfront site.


In partnership with Ngā Mana Whenua o Tāmaki Makaurau, we’ve commissioned internationally recognised local artists Janine Williams (Ngāti Paoa, Ngāti Whātua o Kaipara) and Charles Williams (Ngāti Kahungunu, Ngāi Tūhoe, Ngāpuhi) to create the artwork for Te Pou.

The inspiration for the artwork comes from te taiao (the natural environment). In Māori pūrākau (mythology), Tāne-mahuta is the guardian of trees and birds. They all reside together in Te Wao nui a Tāne - the great forest of Tāne. The trees of Tāne are a taonga (treasure). They provide essential resources for Māori to create waka (canoes), pou (carved posts), whare (shelter) and weaponry. In celebration of Tāne, fauna and flora feature prominently in the artwork through our native bird the tūī and native kowhai tree.  (Text by Auckland Unlimited)