The Project Details



The Project Details

Details of Project


The Camera Obscura team are three self employed individuals looking to create a unique sculpture for the people of Whangarei

Diane Stoppard – Photographer and project manager


Felicity Christian – Architect


Trish Clarke – Sculptor



  • The exterior is made of curved Weathering steel representing a ships hull

  • Detailed design of stainless steel wrap talks of the maritime history of the river and harbor while feeling like precious shell lining

  • The spiral white roof suggests the aperture of a camera and form of the river snail

  • The white roof and path create a ‘koru’ when viewed from the bridge with the koru suggesting new beginings – Timatatanga Hou



Cost of Project

  • Estimated build is $500,000


Significant donations to date:

Culham Engineering - $46,000 Weathering Steel.

Oxford Sports Trust Inc - $23,135 for engineering & 3D design.

Mark Cromie Holden - $10,000 cash donation

GFM Branding Solutions - Web design & development, website & domain hosting & ongoing online support.


See our sponsors list for businesses on board!


Cash donations to date:

  • $1,500 as at 13th September 2016

  • $1,815 as at 19th September 2016

  • $2,020 as at 4th October 2016

  • $2,493 as at 30th November 2016

  • $9,360 as at 9th December 2016

  • $36,550 as at 13th December 2016

  • $43,000 as at 14th August 2017

  • $111,500 as at 31st September 2018



To build an 8m Weathering steel sculpture, within which is a Camera Obscura

  • The public enter sculpture and travel into a white room with organic seating

  • The image outside is projected upside-down and back to front via a simple hole in the wall. A .25 diopta lens can optionally be slid over the hole demonstrating how the eye works and teaching the science of light.

  • The sculpture/building is open during daylight hours and the public can see the image of the bridge on video screen at night.

  • A video screen on the exterior of the sculpture offers the public a surveillance-grid view of all 7 CCTV cameras within the sculpture. The public can see who is in the Camera Obscura and corridor plus see themselves projected inside the Cbscura room looking at the video screen.

  • CCTV cameras offer security enabling the public to be the guardians of the space.

  • CCTV is linked to the web so anyone in the world can view the Bridge lift via the oldest camera (Camera Obscura) through the newest technology (high end CCTV tech).




  • To create an educational destination for Northland and NZ schools. The Camera Obscura experience teaches the science of light, an understanding of how cameras work plus the added interactive art experience offered by CCTV

  • To create a resting stop on the Hatea Loop walk which offers a new way to view Whangarei's Te Matau ā Pohe Bridge

  • To put Te Matau ā Pohe Bridge on the world stage via the web

  • To create a valuable tourist attraction for Northland and NZ

  • To join a handful of unique sizeable Camera Obscura structures in the world


Plan to meet cost

  • 30 - 40% donated by sponsoring construction contractors

  • 10 - 20% cash from community

  • Balance from funding applications

Significant donations to date: Culham Engineering $46,000 Weathering steel.