Arts In Whanganui
With over 400 resident artists, the Arts scene in Whanganui is an array of photography, mosaics, jewellery, paintings, pastel, pottery, re-invented art, sculptures, fashion, textiles and glass. Over 15 galleries are open year round to delight and inspire the most avid collector to the casual browser and once a year the Whanganui Artists Open Studios event sees Whanganui Artists opening the doors or over 60 studios! Artistic expression is not limited to gallery works alone, with our talented community home to performing artists and musicians, all contributing to the arts in Whanganui.
Te Awa O Whanganui (Whanganui River) has been the essential heartbeat for oral, visual and written creative expression over a period spanning many centuries, mixing both settled European and native Maori cultures.
With dynamic and regularly changing exhibitions set in a sleek contemporary space within an historic warehouse, the Sarjeant on the Quay is the temporary home of the Sarjeant Gallery and its collection.
Set the heart of Taupō Quay, the Sarjeant on the Quay’s shop specialises in exclusive gifts including jewellery, objects & glass. The Sarjeant holds more than 8 000 artworks in its collection with a comprehensive NZ art history from the 1840’s to the present day. The iconic neoclassical Sarjeant Gallery at Queens Park is set to undergo a $35 million redevelopment and although closed, remains a Whanganui “must see” site.
New Zealand Glassworks
Whanganui is famed for its glass art with over 400 resident artists. Several studios offer weekend workshops so you can have a go too! New Zealand Glassworks allows free public viewing of the glass blowing process. Situated in the heart of historic old town Whanganui just around the corner from the Whanganui i-SITE Visitor Centre.
QUARTZ Museum of Studio ceramics
Unique to Whanganui is QUARTZ, Museum Of Studio Ceramics. Established to exhibit the Rick Rudd collection of more than 400 ceramic works, one will also be treated to a history of New Zealand exhibit featuring 100 pieces from the early 20th century to today. Full of wonderous creations, this one-of-a-kind museum has something for everyone and a must-see when you Visit Whanganui!
Arts Workshops Guide
Whanganui Arts @ the Centre
The Arts Centre was established in 1989 to provide a venue for artists and craftspeople to exhibit and sell their work. Over the years the Centre has grown and developed into the purpose-built facility it is today. Each year around 15,000 people visit the Arts Centre to participate in a wide range of workshops and classes, view exhibitions of art, or to visit the Saturday Craft Market. A great way to see the arts in Whanganui.
Whanganui Regional Museum
The Whanganui Regional Museum is a must see with collections dated from 1890 and is famed for its Taonga Māori Collection, second to none in Aotearoa New Zealand. It is home to the largest permanent collection of Moa bones in the world (over 1000 bones), as well as housing one of the most extensive collections of Gottfried Lindauer paintings in the country, with Portraits of prominent Māori rangatira (leaders) from the late 19th and early 20th centuries. The Museum Shop and Gallery stocks works by local artists and specialises in books on local history, Maori culture and the natural world.
Artists Open Studios Whanganui
In late March, visit over 60 studios and galleries and over 150 artists studios with outstanding examples in glass, furniture, printmaking, ceramic, jewellery and painting. It’s the best trail in New Zealand with high numbers of glass artists and studios nestled along the banks of the serene Whanganui river, or hidden in the hills in a huge old brick kiln. Great art, great prices and great experiences – visit our world!