Art of Aotearoa explored in new Auckland Art Gallery exhibition


Frank Wright and Walter Wright, The Canoe Builders, 1889/1915, Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, gift of Mr C J Parr, 1915.
Frank Wright and Walter Wright, The Canoe Builders, 1889/1915, Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, gift of Mr C J Parr, 1915.
Taimoana is the focus of the New Zealand art collection exhibition.

A newly opened exhibition at Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki explores the art of Aotearoa New Zealand, locating it within Te Moana-nui-a-Kiwa, the wider Pacific region.

Taimoana | Coastlines: Art in Aotearoa comprises works from the Gallery’s extensive collection and explores multiple perspectives on New Zealand art through the theme of the coast.

“As Winter approaches, the Gallery’s programme is proudly focused on the art and artists of Aotearoa New Zealand and the Pacific in a suite of new exhibitions opening across all floors of the building,” Tātaki Auckland Unlimited Gallery Director Kirsten Lacy says.

“The first to open is an entirely new collection exhibition on the ground floor titled Taimoana | Coastlines.”

“This new presentation from the Gallery’s collection showcases major holdings of historical, modern and contemporary New Zealand art.”

“Taimoana | Coastlines explores our place in the world, confronting local histories and global issues from a distinctly New Zealand perspective.

“We’re delighted all visitors can now enjoy a new experience of the Gallery’s treasured collection of New Zealand art and important stories and culture from the nation.”

The exhibition has been curated by Dr Sarah Farrar, Nathan Pōhio, Dr Jane Davidson-Ladd and Cameron Ah Loo-Matamua. It includes art from the 18th century to today, with works by contemporary artists brought into conversation with modern and historical New Zealand art.

Natalie Robertson, A Red-Tipped Dawn – Pōhautea at Waiapu Ngutu Awa (7th August 2020). Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, purchased 2023.

Works from the collection on display include:

  • Te Ika a Maui, 1970, by Fred Graham – a painting depicting the pūrākau of Māui fishing up the North Island.
  • Pacific Air Journey, a large segment of the mural by Pat Hanly originally commissioned for Auckland Airport’s departure lounge in 1977, on public display again for the first time.
  • Fresh Eke (Eke Nui and Babies), 2003-04, a multicoloured crocheted octopus with more than 20 babies, by Ani O’Neill.
  • Watercolours by Reverend John Kinder documenting his travels along New Zealand’s coastline in the 1850s-70s.
  • Over seven meters in length, a newly acquired sculpture by Chris Charteris, Te Ma (Fish Trap), 2014, comprises over 8000 pairs of clam shells collected from Coromandel Peninsula to reference traditional i-Kiribati fish traps.
  • A tiny oil painting by CF Goldie showing a kuia telling the story of the arrival of the Arawa canoe to her mokopuna.
  • Wild Waves, an oil on cardboard painting by A. Lois White, of three nude women frolicking in the sea, likely painted in 1943 during the Second World War.
  • Frederick Stack’s View of Auckland Harbour, New Zealand taken during the Regatta of January (1862), which documents the race of waka taua (war canoes) during the Anniversary Day regatta.


Exhibition details: Taimoana | Coastlines: Art in Aotearoa

When: Saturday 20 April 2024–mid 2026, 10am–5pm daily

Where: Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, Cnr Kitchener and Wellesley Streets, Tāmaki Makaurau Auckland

Admission: FREE


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