Te Papa will open a spectacular new art gallery space in the museum in late 2017, Chief Executive Rick Ellis announced today. Located over levels four and five, the space for art will grow by 35% from 2,430m2 to 3,290m2.  This will include a new double-height gallery (artist’s impression above), which will be entered opposite Espresso on Level Four. This new space with its eight-metre-high walls will enable the showing of large sculptural works and also offer immersive art experiences on a scale never seen before at the museum. Te Papa expects to invest $6 million in creating this new art experience. Entry will be free.

Te Papa’s Head of Art, Charlotte Davy said “As holders of the national art collection, Te Papa is uniquely placed to share the art of Aotearoa. In this expanded space there will be more room for exciting and challenging new works, as well as beloved classics. We are creating new opportunities for New Zealand artists, as we will commission new works to feature in the gallery. There will also be a dedicated area for works by iconic local artists. When people come to Te Papa they will know they can see works by artists such as Charles Goldie, Rita Angus, Colin McCahon and Ralph Hotere.”

To allow construction to begin, the current Ngā Toi | Arts Te Papa gallery on Level 5 will close on Sunday 26 February 2017.  Exhibits on Level Four which will also close are the 20th century history gallery Slice of Heaven and also one of Te Papa’s four children’s play areas, Inspiration Station which includes a play supermarket.  Architects Warren and Mahoney are designing the new art space and work will begin as soon as the existing galleries close.

Read the New Zealand Listener article here.

Feature image: Warren and Mahoney sketch plan for the new gallery space