The name Te Pā Tāhuna was gifted to the community by mana whenua. It celebrates their long connection with Tāhuna – Queenstown. The name Te Pā Tāhuna draws on Māori traditions of ahi kā. It’s a place where the home fires always burn on the shores of Lake Whakatipu Waimāori.
Tūwiriroa was a Kāti Mamoe chief who settled in the Tāhuna – Queenstown area.
The Tāhuna – Queenstown and Central Otago Lakes area was of significant importance to the Waitaha, Kāti Mamoe, and Kāi Tahu people as a source of mahika kai, pounamu and other taonga.
Today it is a place of settlement, a burial place, and a cultural landscape that embodies the ancestral, spiritual and religious traditions of all the generations prior to European settlement.
Ngāi Tahu artist Ross Hemera was commisioned by mana whenua to create an artwork for Te Pā Tāhuna to use as our visual identity.
The artwork represents the footsteps of the pākura, the pūkeko, or purple swamp hen, abundant around the shores of Lake Whakatipu Waimāori. The artwork also symbolises the footsteps of our ancestors over the land.
The colours in the artwork speak of the taonga of this region. The glistening pounamu, the water of the lake, the hearth fires of Tūwiriroa and Tāhuna, and the Ngāi Tahu people themselves.