Natanahira Pona


Work environments should be safe and enjoyable. Self-motivated and understanding of the tasks that are at hand, to get a job done once and correctly. This requires skills that not everyone possesses, and which only come with experience.

I am calm, friendly and great mediator, these skills can be extremely helpful when working with clients.

Master Carver

Kia Pai…Tu Meke….Mahi mahi mahi

About Natanahira Te Pona

Born and bred in Turangi. When I was young all I wanted to do was join the armoured division in Waiouru as a tank diver, it was a passion for me. I watched the Falklands war unfold. Having seen the effects of an antitank missile technology at that time, I decided that it was not a great career to pursue
Hence at was my second option, just a litter safer

From there I attended the Maori Arts and Crafts Institute in Rotorua where my career as an artist has bloomed. I can say that it was not an easy road to take but….I have not regretted the path I have taken.

I have represented Aotearoa in sculpture as I was chosen to attend a wood sculpture in Nepal to assist with the rebuild of a school playground, not long after the earthquake 2015 in Nepal.

Thorough out my life and the careers that I have lead in my life, has lead to this moment. I have been working with whanau from all cultures, in exploring the world of Te Ao Maori.

Assisting whanau as in helping them to understand how the world of te Ao Maori perceived in this modern world and era, bringing back the wairua the tiakana and kawa to that, that has been missing within our culture and youth of today.

Assisting youth and adults in assisting to reunite them with their heritage, In return helping them understand who they are and where they came from.

I am currently working with whanau of different cultures, assisting them in understanding the world of Te Ao Maori. In return I get to understand their culture.

  • Well skilled with practical machinery and tools
  • I can work with-in any environment that requires specialised tools
  •  Full drivers’ licence
  • Basic computer skills
  • Good communication skills.  For example, working with councils and relaying the message to artists eg: OHS compliance  
  • Good at practical on the floor management 
  • Great at mediator skills. For example, between clients and artists.  
  • Working within a team environment.
  • I am self-motivated. 
  • I will not leave a work environment until the task at hand is complete.

Lake House Arts


Still Employed P/T


  • Te Reo tutor 
  • Whakairo tutor
  • [Tasks, duties, achievements]

Odyssey House 

New Lynn



  • Whakairo tutor
  • [Tasks, duties, achievements]
  • [Tasks, duties, achievements]

Kawerau District council




  • Sculpture Floor manager
  • Sculptors mediator 
  • [Tasks, duties, achievements]

Maori Arts and Crafts Institute Rotorua




Te Wananga o Aotearoa 

Te Awamutu



Matariki Rotorua


0211- 2017


  • Management
  • Working with and orginsing artist 
  • Working with Rotorua council to create events


I have led and worked within many projects that show case, the many skills that I have acquired during my time as an artist and organiser, of many art events and projects, skills that have helped me work with local councils, public schools, local business and private institutions.     


  • Creating
  • Working with other cultures
  • Working with all clients from all ages
  • Teaching with in the world of Te Ao Maori
  • Sports
  • Art
  • Movies


Wiremu Taniwha Kingi rauauko Ngahuia Retimana oku tipuna ki te taha ko taku Papa

Rangi Herewaka Rata rauako Paiahua Karena oku tipuna ki te taha ko taku whaea


Ko Tutete Taniwha Kingi rauauko Mailie Rata oku maatua


Nga Puhi, Tu Wharetoa, Ngati Raukawa, Te Arawa oku Iwi

Matangirau, Mangamuka, Hirangi, Tunohopu oku marae


Arts Education:

Whakatane Sculpture Symposium                                          2020 (Floor manager)

Whakatane Sculpture Symposium                                         2019 (Floor manager)

Matariki Sculpture program                                                   2019 Artist Director

Kawerau Sculpture Symposium                                              2019 (Floor manager)


Tutor Odyssey House New Lynn                                               2019 part-time

Lake house Whakairo tutor                                                    2019 part-time

Whakatane Symposium                                                         2018 (Floor manager)

Kawerau Woodbugs Symposium                                             2018 (Floor manager)

Rotorua Sculpture symposium                                                2018

Whakatane Symposium                                                         2017 (Floor manager)

Kawerau Woodbugs Symposium                                             2017 (Floor manager)

Lakehouse Sculpture Symposium                                              2017

Kawerau Woodbugs Symposium                                             2017 (Floor manager)

Leigh Sculpture Symposium                                                    2017Whakatane Symposium                                                 2016 (Floor manager kids program)

Nepal World Wood Symposium                                             2016 (Represented Aotearoa)

Kawerau Woodbugs Symposium                                             2016 (Floor manager)

Rotorua Sculpture symposium                                               2016

Whakatane Sculpture symposium                                          2015

Kawhia School                                                                         2015

Kawhia Arts festival                                                                2015

Kawerau Woodbugs Symposium                                            2015 (Floor manager)

Stratford Symposium                                                              2015

Kauwerau Woodbugs Symposium                                          2014

Rotorua Sculpture symposium                                               2014

Matariki Sculpture symposium                                               2013 (Floor manager)

Matariki Sculpture symposium Rotorua                                 2012 (Floor manager)

Whitianga Sculpture symposium                                            2012Maori Visual Batchelor Arts Twoa                                              2011 – 2012

Ruapeke Marae Fitzgerald’s glades State High 5                   2011

Apumoana Marae Tangata whenua shelter                           2010

Art exhibition Australia                                                           2007

Computer Animator with Maori TV in Turangi                       2005 – 2006

Sculpture Symposium Lake house Auckland                          2001 – 2002 – 2003 – 2004

Sculptures to Texas with Peter Brierley Millman                   2004

Arts exhibition Holland                                                           2004

Parliament Buildings Refurbishment team                            91 – 95

Maori Arts and Crafts Institute Rotorua                                 87 – 90

Book My Session

Mahi Whakairo - Carving Course 1

$ 39
  • Nga mihi Whanau ano (You will notice below how to pronounce the translation in English) (Nah me-he Far-no a-naw) Hello again family
  • As we roll through the weeks, we will be discussing Maori designs for now and the meanings behind them, there are many version or interpretations behind each tohu (Tore-who) …depending on the artist and the tribe.
  • Check out the Intro Video
Get Started


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