The project developed from work I was doing at Dargaville High School when I was artist in residence as part of the short lived Artists in Schools programme. A storm water drain ran between Gordon Street and Tirarau Street and the fence that ran along the area was tagged and run down, I made an application to the Ministry of Justice's Anti Graffiti Fund and we got a grant of $28,000 over two years to find ways to combat graffiti and improve the area.
Over the two years I worked with staff and students at Dargaville High School to develop a range of work including a fence artwork to stop the tagging, replanting the banks of the storm drain and improving the biodiversity in the area and continues to be used as an outdoor classroom by the school.
We began the project by looking at the way plants and animals protect themselves and used ideas from what we learnt to devise ways to protect the fence from being tagged. We also explored a range of other ways to encourage wildlife to the area and increase biodiversity as a way to improve the area and get people using it as part of the holistic approach we took to stop the graffiti.