A Quick Guide to Northland Artisans and Galleries: our staff picks!
Visiting Northland? Explore our handpicked selection of Northland artisans and galleries: we have a lot more to offer than fabulous coastlines, crystal clear waters, rolling bush-clad hills and Rugby World Cup matches –we’re also known for our outstanding artistic culture. So while your travel companions are soaking up the pre-match festivities, why not head out to some of these hidden (and not so hidden) artistic gems?
We’ve done all the hard work for you – this is our unofficial guide to the top galleries in Northland. Enjoy!
Whangarei Art Galleries
Burning Issues Gallery
Where: 8 Quayside, Town Basin, Whangarei
Contact: 64 9 438 3108
Open: 7 days a week 10am-5.00pm.
This popular art gallery is located on a prime waterfront position within the Town Basin. The high quality and diversity of the art on display makes this gallery a must-visit destination: from unique handmade jewellery through to ceramics, wall art, sculpture and even glassware handblown on site, Burning Issues is an artistic feast.
Where: Quayside, Town Basin, Whangarei
Contact: 09 4382787
Open: Open 7 days, 9.30am-4,30pm
Whangarei's own 'Basin Arts & Crafts House', with gallery space dedicated to showcasing the very best of Northlands Arts and Crafts. The Bach is Northland's largest Artisans gallery with 100% locally made Art and Craft and approximately 100 local members and guests contributing to the diverse range of the highest quality arts and crafts.
Reyburn House Art Gallery
Where: Reyburn House Lane, Town Basin, Whangarei
Contact: 09 438 3074
Open: Tuesday to Friday 10am - 4pm, Saturday & Sunday 1pm - 4pm, Closed Mondays
With a rich heritage and a true community feel, the Reyburn House Gallery is staffed by volunteers who give their all to keep this grand old lady in service. Aside from the gorgeous building itself, the artworks displayed are of an impeccably high standard. Often showcasing local artists, this is the place to view a spirited range of affordable, unique artwork.
Whangarei Art Museum
Where: The HUB, Dent Street, Town Basin, Whangarei
Contact: 09 430 4240
Open: Monday - Friday 10am - 4pm, Weekends 10am - 4pm
More of a location to view rather than purchase, the Whangarei Art Museum offers an insight into contemporary art and touring exhibitions. The museum itself is a proud addition to the Whangarei Town Basin development, and has become a popular destination for those interested in furthering their artistic education. A classy and worthwhile daytime activity.
Quarry Arts Centre
Where: 21 Selwyn Avenue, Whangarei
Contact: 09 438 1215
Open: 9am - 4.30pm Mon - Fri, site open 7 days
The Quarry Arts Centre is a completely unique and refreshing experience. We guarantee you won’t have seen anything quite like this eclectic community of artists, potters, creators and crafters. The set-up is quirky and the vibe is energising, funky and altogether unexpected! The onsite gallery itself has on display a varying mix of mediums, however the standard of quality is undeniable. Also onsite is a fascinating artists giftshop – the pieces on sale here are outstanding, while the tiny café offers good, strong coffee.
Where: 294 Ngunguru Road, Whangarei
Contact: 09 437 5359
Open: daily, 9am-5pm
Well-known local potters Greg Barron and Jin Ling offer their original pieces for sale from their home-based pottery studio, nestled in the established ‘golden mile’ country location of Glenbervie. A visit to their studio is well worthwhile, if not simply for the lovely drive (another 15 minutes further on will see you arrive at Ngunguru, the first in a long series of coastal treats), then for the beautifully glazed and stamped Barron pottery. Jin Ling’s easily recognisable style will also delight – you’d regret missing this stop!
Where: 1817 Ngunguru Road, Whangarei
Contact: 09 434 3523
Open: opening hours vary, contact for more information
Another local who has become famous in her own right, Akke Tiemersma offers both pottery classes and an open-to-view workshop and gallery at her home-based studio in Ngunguru. A short drive on from Glenbervie Pottery, this is a lovely place to view Akke’s signature range of pottery delights – functional and delicious, this is pottery to use every day and savour in every way. Take a moment out of your day to appreciate Akke’s talented efforts, and walk away with your new favourite piece of pottery.
Whangarei’s art scene continues…
Of course, there are plenty more art galleries and artists within the Whangarei District, it’s simply overwhelming to try and list them all! We must pay homage to the hugely popular Café and Gallery on Helena Bay Hill – you can read our review of that particular spot in our list of Whangarei’s top cafés – and if you’re heading up north for a day trip, be sure to stop in at the impressive Kaan Zamaan Art Gallery in Kerikeri, and the gorgeously appointed Art at Wharepuke – a destination in it’s own right.