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Huge comic strip on Christchurch Convention Centre site

8 December 2016

An application has been made to Guinness World Records to recognise a new hoarding on the Christchurch Convention Centre site as the largest comic strip ever produced by an individual.

Ōtautahi: An Origin Story brings elements of Christchurch’s past and future to life through a 113-metre-long graphic novel.

The comic strip is located on the Cathedral Square side of the Convention Centre construction site.

It is the first professionally-commissioned artwork produced by 28-year-old Felicity Jane Powell of RE:Edit Publishing.

“Ōtākaro showed a huge amount of faith in my work and me, with such a huge blank canvas in a central location," says Powell.

"I wanted to use the opportunity to produce something that encourages visitors and residents to re-think their places and to feel like they are a valued part of the story we’re unfolding here in Christchurch," she says.

“As far as I’m aware there is no current record for largest comic strip ever produced by an individual, so I’m hoping to hear soon that Christchurch has claimed it.”

The story is told both through graphic devices and interactive areas which ask people to put themselves in the picture and share on social media using specific hashtags, to bring the conversation to life.

There are ‘selfie-spots’ and different areas where people can share their own unique parts of the story and make it their own.

"Empowerment and engagement has been such a huge part of our recovery in Christchurch,” says Powell.

"From my experiences here, I really do believe that where we gather together, extraordinary things happen."

The Christchurch Convention Centre is being delivered by Ōtākaro Limited on behalf of the Crown.

Ōtākaro Limited Chief Executive Albert Brantley says photos do not do the work justice.

“A lot of people are going to use the Convention Centre when it opens in 2020 but we have an opportunity to use this fence line to provide a point of interest in the central city right now.

"This work tells a relatable story in a way we’ve not seen before.”

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