Positive response for Kāpiti's whale song project
Updated: Aug 28, 2021
Nothing can wipe the smile off Marco Zeeman's face.
After years of planning, the whale sculpture park has been released to the public and the response has been "amazing", said Marco, a former Wellingtonian of the Year, who is helping spearhead the Whale Song project.
"The reaction has been amazing. We've had constant people coming through our doors, and people coming from afar to check it out."
Marco has, in his own words, "practically been living at the mall," working on the project and talking about it with anyone that comes into their information shop at Coastlands.
"We're meeting all these descendants of whalers who have come in to share their stories with us. There's been a lot of interest and lots of support."
With still a lot of work, funding is the number one priority for Marco along with resource consent for the site.
"If we get three of the big whales funded we're on our way to the Lottery Significant Project Fund. We need a third of our funding before we can apply.
"We've been in discussion with them for the last few years and we know our criteria meets their criteria so we're ever hopeful, if not we will still continue on.
"I believe that the time is here."
The enormity of the project keeps getting more exciting for Marco as he continues discussions with filmmaker Sir Richard Taylor.
We've been looking at various metal options and Sir Richard Taylor reckons this whale (the 24m one) will be the single biggest bronze sculpture in the world — by itself without the other six whales.
"That's a pretty big boast for Kāpiti."
To continue to show the community what the project will look like, the biggest 3D printer in New Zealand is currently printing replica whale sculptures in Coastlands to create a marquee sculpture park, one tenth of the full size.
Once finished the marquee sculptures will be on display in Coastlands. The Whale Song Information Centre is open during Coastlands hours to give the community an insight into the project.