Ans Westra, 'Whakarewarewa, Rotorua', Collection of Rotorua Museum Te Whare Taonga o Te Arawa, (2016.33.2)
Beginning with a pair of watercolour portraits by Horatio Robley made in Tauranga in 1865, the exhibition moves through a huge range of topics and materials ending with Neil Pardington’s large scale photographs of Rotorua Museum’s taonga Māori store from 2008.
In between you can explore beautifully rendered paintings of the Pink and White Terraces by Charles Blomfield, gritty depictions of the kiwi bloke lifestyle of sheep shearing and pub culture by D.K Turner and Garth Tapper, a range of quirky New Zealand ceramics by some of the countries most respected potters, the rise of modern and contemporary Māori art, and photography by Mark Adams that captures specific Bay of Plenty places in time.
Housed in the Bath House, one of New Zealand’s most distinctive and historically significant buildings, the Rotorua Art Gallery opened in the north wing in 1977 and a decade later amalgamated with Rotorua Museum. Over the following years the Museum developed a rich collection of New Zealand art with a particular focus on the unique features of the people, sites and events of Rotorua and the Bay of Plenty.