COVID-19 UPDATE: Alert Level 3, Step 2
Kia ora, now that Auckland has moved to COVID-19 Alert Level 3, Step 2, the Library will be open by appointment only 1– 5pm Wednesdays and Thursdays. Please note: an appointment is essential in order to access the Library. Please contact us in advance of your visit via email or on +64 9 307 7714.
We still welcome research requests via email. Please note we may only be able to respond to these in full during the above hours.
The Gallery is also undertaking an offsite storage move. The Archive will be unavailable for access until February 2022. Please continue to contact us for all other research queries and we will be happy to make an appointment for viewing archives in the new year.
Established in 1956 and named after New Zealand art historian Eric H McCormick, our library team collects, cares for and provides access to extensive research collections on New Zealand and international art. Among the library’s resources, you’ll find scholarly books, the latest magazines and journals, audio-visual material, international databases and a unique collection of archives.
Read about the recent inscription of the Marti Friedlander Archive on the UNESCO Memory of the World NZ Register.
Explore the Research Library's reading room on Google Arts & Culture.
Read a blog about the Partridge gift of Lindauer Māori portraits on NZWW100.
Books, magazines and journals
Our library’s collection contains beautifully illustrated books that represent a significant source of knowledge on New Zealand and Pacific art, international contemporary art, historic and modern art, and museology. Search the online catalogue.
Our library holds some of the world’s leading visual arts magazines and journals, as well as a comprehensive list of New Zealand titles including Reading Room: A Journal of Art and Culture, published by the Gallery with the support of The Marylyn Mayo Foundation.
Explore 4000 artist files which have been built up over 50 years and are continually updated to provide insight into New Zealand and Pacific artists. Read through biographies, reviews, correspondence and interviews relating to established and emerging artists from Dan Arps to Jane Zusters. Search for artist files.
The Library holds extensive files on New Zealand painter Colin McCahon (1919–87) which include manuscript material, exhibition catalogues and ephemera, newspaper and journal articles. The contents are listed in the Colin McCahon Artist Files inventory. Further information on McCahon's work is available on the Colin McCahon Online Catalogue. Requests for copyright approval or notification of previously unknown works by McCahon may be sent to the Colin McCahon Research and Publication Trust's Honorary Secretary.
The Library holds the archive of Auckland Art Gallery from its opening in 1888 to the present day. Additional material on the Gallery and its history is held at Auckland Council Archives.
Search our exhibition catalogues from 1954–89 and the Gallery Quarterly journal, published from 1956–78, which contains information on the Gallery's history, collections and past exhibitions. Download the Gallery's exhibition history and archive listing.
The Library also holds a number of archives including those of Auckland galleries Artspace, IKON, PhotoForum, Real Pictures and Teststrip, and artists including Jim Allen, Bruce Barber, Harvey Benge, Fiona Connor, Tony Fomison, Marti Friedlander, Louise Henderson, Frances Hodgkins, Giovanna Intra, Malcolm Ross, May Smith, Charles Tole, John B Turner, Dennis Knight Turner, and John Weeks, and of art historians Michael Dunn, Tony Green and Peter Tomory. Explore the archives.
Auckland Society of Arts (ASA)
Beginning as the 'Society of Artists, Auckland' in the 1870s, the Auckland Society of Arts held yearly exhibitions from 1881 and was disestablished in 2004. The Library holds an almost complete run of ASA exhibition catalogues as well as exhibition records by artist from 1873 to 1947. These records are available to download by artist surname: Artists A-G, Artists H-L, Artists M-Q, Artists R-Z.
Find New Zealand Artists website
A joint project by Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki and Christchurch Art Gallery Te Puna o Waiwhetu, Find New Zealand Artists enables everyone from hobbyists to professional researchers to easily locate the wealth of artist information held across New Zealand libraries, published sources and art society records. Operating as an information portal, the website allows users to search for and locate information on over 18,000 New Zealand artists in one place.
Access specialist online art databases in the Library reading room including Australian and New Zealand Art Sales Digest, Artnet, Artprice, JSTOR and Oxford Art Online.
The library holds an extensive collection of both audio resources and video resources, which includes films and TV series on art and related topics, art and artist talks, lectures and events recorded at the Gallery from the mid-1970s onwards. The collection also includes archives, such as the NZ Society of Sculptors and Painters artist talks (1983–6) and interviews in the Women's Art Archive (1982–4). Please note that some material is held offsite and may require a few days’ notice to retrieve. Watch recent highlights.
For further information please contact our library staff:
Philippa Robinson, Research Library and Archives Manager
Caroline McBride, Librarian/Archivist
Tamsyn Bayliss, Librarian/Discovery and Access
Phone +64 9 307 7714
Fax +64 9 302 1096
Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki
PO Box 5449