Commemorating the multiple award-winning expansion, restoration and development of Auckland Art Gallery in 2011, Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki: A Place for Art, takes readers on a visual journey of the internationally acclaimed project from start to finish.
Surveying the history of the Gallery from its origins in 1888 through the developments of the last century, it includes In-depth commentary from Richard Francis-Jones, Design Director of the 2011 development project led by architects Francis-Jones Morehen Thorp (FJMT) with local studio Archimedia. Among the highlights of the book are images by Patrick Reynolds, recognised as one of New Zealand's leading architectural photographers.
The Gallery's former Director, Chris Saines, who led the nine-year construction and restoration project and who is now Director of the Queensland Art Gallery | Gallery of Modern Art in Brisbane, recounts how the project team were determined to retain the character of the heritage buildings, yet create a distinctly 21st-century art museum.
'All of the partners in the project wanted to give Auckland a world-class gallery that would bring art and people together in a unique way. The continuing warmth of public response to the new building, and the recognition it has already received through national and international awards only confirms that goal was met,' Mr Saines said.
Since the development was completed in September 2011, the Gallery has received 16 architectural and four design related awards - earlier this month (October 2013), it was announced the 2013 World Building of the Year at the World Architecture Festival in Singapore. Other accolades include the Jørn Utzon Award for International Architecture from the Australian Institute of Architects, the Royal Institute of British Architects' International Award in 2012 and the New Zealand Architecture Medal from the New Zealand Institute of Architects.
Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki Director Rhana Devenport says that two years on from its reopening the Gallery's building continues to inspire and delight visitors.
'It is an absolute pleasure to house New Zealand's most significant collection of art in such a sensitively considered and beautifully-crafted building that has achieved an exceptional level of international acclaim.
'The contemporary and historic blend so seamlessly while the unique layering of Māori and Pacific cultural influences are embedded in its fabric and form. The transparency of the building into neighbouring Albert Park and the creation of sightlines through the building, have demonstrated the Gallery's openness to its natural and urban environment, inviting visitors to enjoy the pleasures and complexities of the experiences inside.'