There will be much more than ebony and ivory on Te Puke Library's piano.

The piano will eventually be stationed outside the library for anyone passing - or making a special trip - to tinkle.

But before that, it is being spruced up with artwork, thanks to the combined efforts of Te Puke High School students Taka Kabuati, Rico Turnbull and Masiah Tahuri, their teacher Josephine McDougall and Pukehina artist Teimana (Des) Mohi.

Josephine says the project began last year when Te Puke Library team leader Amanda-Jane McFadden approached the school to ask if there was interest in students brightening up the piano with artwork.


''We started by talking about what Te Puke means to them, then we began working on the design,'' says Josephine.

On one end there are fish and chips - a reflection of Maketū - and the other and the top, kiwifruit and vines.

The back panel's design has a stripe pattern echoing the shapes of the hills and rivers of the district interspersed with cultural images from the Māori, European, Pacifika and Indian communities.

The front panel features sea life, and was designed by Teimana.

The phrase Goodness Grows Here will also feature on the piano.

The students and their teacher began creating the final design in the library last week.

''Lots of people coming through commented on it and were saying they are looking forward to playing it or hearing it being played,'' says Josephine.

The piano started its life in England in early 1910 before coming to New Zealand.


''It was being given away to a new home so we snapped it up as we had seen a community piano in Katikati,'' says Amanda-Jane.

''We thought we could bring some joy to the Te Puke community too by painting it up for people passing by to play.

''We really wanted to have some young people show off their artwork and what it meant to them to live in our community so we contact Te Puke High School.

''We then applied to the Te Puke Community Board for Community Funding to get the wheel base made for easy movement''.

She says all the library staff are very excited at the prospect of seeing the finished piano and hearing it being played outside the library.