Archive Display | Building Beginning: Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki


exhibition Details

As the first purpose-built art gallery in Aotearoa New Zealand, Auckland Art Gallery opened with much fanfare in 1888. The French château-style building, designed by Melbourne architects John H Grainger and Charles A D’Ebro to house the city’s public library and municipal offices, was one of Auckland’s first civic establishments. The Gallery is in the rohe (region) of Horotiu, which encompasses Rangipuke (Albert Park) and the gully where Aotea Square now lies.

Bringing together architectural drawings, photographs and samples of the roof’s slate tiles, this display from our archives celebrates the Gallery’s heritage and coincides with a preservation project to replace the roof and repaint the outside walls of the original building. Named Kia Whakahou, Kia Whakaora (to restore, to heal), the restoration project honours our commitment as kaitiaki (guardians) to conserve the heritage of Auckland and to ensure that this iconic, well-loved building is looked after for future generations.

Image credit: Unknown photographer, Auckland Public Library and Art Gallery, 1908, E H McCormick Research Library, Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki.

Curated by
Caroline McBride, Tamsyn Bayliss
Research Library Display Case Mezzanine Level

Explore Further