An ever-changing array of innovative art awaits at this free Wellington gallery.
City Gallery Wellington is an unusual gallery in that it has no permanent collections of its own. Instead, it hosts a variety of changing temporary exhibitions based around the latest in cutting-edge contemporary art, architecture and design from New Zealand and abroad. Housed in the former Wellington Public Library, the gallery consists of seven main exhibition spaces within a beautiful Art Deco building.
Before you enter the main gallery, pay a visit to Square2, a visual art area which screens artists' videos on a 24-hour basis. Then head to the Deane Gallery to learn about Māori and Pacific Island art, before making your way to the Hirschfeld Gallery for work by Wellington natives. There are between six and eight exhibitions held in this space each year, covering everything from painting and sculpture to photography.
While taking in the gallery's impressive collections, don’t forget to take the time to admire the interior of the building itself, with original Art Deco features such as the period glass light fittings.
If you have the kids in tow, a great way to keep them focused and entertained is to download the gallery's activity booklets before your visit. These provide an entertaining way for the kids to interact with the exhibits as they move through the gallery. Children aged 5 to 8 years old will enjoy the Art Explorer: Civic Square booklet while Art Explorer: Waterfront caters for children aged 9 to 12 years.
As the gallery's collections change on a regular basis, it's a good idea to check the official website before your visit for information on the current exhibitions and events.
City Gallery Wellington is located in Civic Square, right in the centre of Wellington. There are numerous bus routes with stops here as well as plentiful on-street parking just nearby. The gallery is open every day except Christmas Day and admission is free, though occasional charges may apply to some of the exhibitions.