Weta lines up to make Maclary sculptures

Artists employed by Wellington’s world-renowned Weta Workshop are lining up to win the right to create life-sized sculptures of the beloved Hairy Maclary children’s book characters.

The workshop, famous for its Oscar-winning efforts for movies like Peter Jackson’s Lord of the Rings trilogy, has approached Creative Tauranga for information on the planned Hairy Maclary sculpture trail through Tauranga’s city centre.

Creative Tauranga chief executive Tracey Rudduck-Gudsell said there was already a lot of excitement around the project and it was great that the workshop’s artists, which included some former Tauranga locals, were so interested.

She received the best possible Christmas present late last year when the Tauranga Energy Consumer Trust (TECT) agreed to put up the project’s $30,000 of seed funding.

“It is massive for this city,” she said of the plan to install up to 12 of the characters created by Tauranga author Dame Lynley Dodd through the downtown area.

She said TECT’s spontaneous decision indicated the enormous appeal of the project. All going well, she hoped that some of the sculptures would be in place by the time the Rugby World Cup began in September.

“It will be such a drawcard. Everyone has read a Hairy Maclary book, or has their favourite character.”
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