Rotorua's artistic talent is invited to help 'green toads' of local infrastructure turn into creative masterpieces.

Artists and creatives are invited to submit proposals for the embellishment of a series of new Unison cabinets which are destined to be installed throughout the city and its environs over the coming months.

The installations are typically two sets of cabinets. One is the switchboard cabinet (A) and the other is the larger more complex transformer cabinet (B).

Rotorua Lakes Council community arts advisor Marc Spijkerbosch says these cabinets have been referred to as 'green toads' in the past.


"Sure, they are an essential part of our infrastructure, but there's no reason why we can't add some artistic magic and make them less industrial and robotic.

"Let's turn them into endearing icons instead …engaging features for our inner city."

He says they will be initially concentrating on two cabinets due for installation over the next couple of months.

"I understand that there will be a number of cabinets being installed throughout the city and environs over the next year or two, so we'll be responding within Unison's time-frames."

The artwork will be painted, either by brush or spray (or a combination of both) at a facility within the Unison depot on Bidois Rd, to later be installed on site.

He says the brief has been deliberately kept open to allow for wide-ranging creative concepts, but that artists have been requested to consider the position of the cabinets and make reference to Rotorua's unique cultural and physical environment.

"It's another opportunity to foster, showcase and celebrate Rotorua's tremendous artistic talent."

The first cabinets will be positioned permanently on the corner of Tutanekai and Pukuatua Sts, which is a high profile area of Rotorua's CBD.


The second cabinets will situated at 325 Fenton St on motel grounds. Marc says this represents a key feature for passers-by and pedestrians.

- The deadline for proposals is August 12. For more information on the cabinets and proposals go to