Te Oro’s Sound Sites are network of six integrated artwork zones around the perimeter of the building. Each site consists of sculptural speaker cone embedded in the building soffit – from which can be heard an audio artwork, a machine-carved timber column and a kōwhatu in the nearby landscape. These unique audio artworks are broadcast on continual play, extending the central concept of the karaka tree grove, with a subtle ‘sound atmosphere’ that filters down from the metaphorical leaf canopy overhead.
Music producer and composer Matthew Salapu (aka Anonymouz) created three community audio artwork compositions in collaboration with the people of Glen Innes. The Community Soundscapes are the result of an immersive period of research, workshops and collaborations within Glen Innes, a modern day symphony with everyday recordings drawn from the local area replacing traditional instrumentation. These recordings have been arranged chronologically and thematically to the narrative of the local legend of Parehuia and the karaka grove of Taurere - Mt Taylor.
The remaining three sound sites have been developed through a collaborative process with mana whenua iwi – producing unique audio artworks from which have developed patterns for the machine-carving on timber columns. The sound composers involved in these audio artworks are Lorna Rikihana of Ngāti Pāoa, Mahu Rawiri of Ngāi Tai Ki Tāmaki and Jerome Cowley of Ngāti Whātua Ōrākei – with the artists Tina Pihema of Ngati Whatua Orakei, Tessa Harris of Ngāi Tai Ki Tāmaki and Lorna Rikihana of Ngāti Pāoa, being responsible for the designs for the machine-carved timber panels.
The Te Oro sound sites represent the multi-generational story of Glen Innes as never heard before, told through this series of audio artwork compositions and carved panels – through the comprehensive and creative engagement of the Glen Innes community.