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Wellington is New Zealand's creative heart, and there are plenty of ways to go behind the scenes and experience the arts that make the city - from the national art collection to movie magic at Weta Workshop.
The Cuba Art Quarter is a bite-sized piece of Cuba Street with a concentration of quality dealer galleries specialising in works by leading contemporary New Zealand artists. Led by charismatic figures in the NZ art scene, Hamish McKay, Peter McLeavey Gallery, Bowen Galleries and Suite Gallery all have regularly changing exhibitions and stock rooms full of artworks to explore.
All galleries have regular opening hours, or get in touch directly for a private one-on-one viewing.
City Gallery Wellington has a reputation for world-class exhibitions of contemporary New Zealand and international art from renowned artists including Yayoi Kusama, Sam Taylor Wood, Francis Upritchard, and Colin McCahon.
Housed in an elegant stripped classical style building, City Gallery Wellington has won architectural awards for its transformation into an art gallery space. Private and after-hours exhibition tours can be arranged in advance by contacting the gallery, and the much-celebrated Nikau Café can provide catering for private functions.
Fine Arts Tours offer privately guided luxury tours that can be customised to focus on Wellington art, or combine your love of art with good food and wine with a trip over the hill to Martinborough for a vineyard lunch, with a stop at the Dowse Art Museum on your way.
With well-regarded and mature guides who are passionate about their respective fields, Fine Arts Tours will carefully plan your tour to deliver one of the most delightful arts and culture experiences in Wellington.
Enjoy the undivided attention of your Weta Workshop tour guide and learn first-hand the story of film-making on the Miramar Peninsula with a personal VIP or bespoke tour. You'll get access to areas usually under wraps to the public, including the Weta boardroom for an up-close look (and hold!) of the five Oscars® and the many other awards won by Sir Richard Taylor and his crew.
You’ll also get a unique insight into the creative process with a behind-the-scenes and hands-on demonstration from an experienced Weta Workshop technician.
Te Papa's Taonga Maori Tour lets you experience Te Papa like never before. This hosted cultural tour will weave you through the Maori exhibition spaces at Te Papa and take you behind the scenes to experience Maori taonga (treasures) close up and engage with the collections staff who act as kaitiaki (guardians) of these precious treasures.
This memorable tour ends with some light refreshments and some time to reflect with your hosts.