Our new temporary gallery space, MAHARA iti, opened on 19 March. Visitors and locals are loving having a new gallery space again in Waikanae. We are open Monday — Friday from 10am — 4pm in association with Andrew Sexton Architecture. We are enjoying the street-front access, increased visibility, and contemporary setting. You can find us two doors down from old SH1.

Our opening show Mizuho Nishioka, recent work, has impressed visitors with stunning images which explore the relationship between representation and scientific depiction of the natural world. Mizuho was invited to show her work with the European Cultural Centre at the 59th Venice Biennale this year, which runs from 23 April – 27 November. As a Kāpiti-based artist, we wanted to honour this wonderful opportunity with her. The following show by Birgit Moffatt Safe Space celebrates another Kāpiti-based artist who has been a finalist in several prestigious national art awards recently.

Work on the gallery redevelopment is proceeding well, keeping to schedule and within budget. Donations are coming in regularly from individuals wanting to support one of the four gallery spaces. Recently we have been able to announce significant support from the family of noted art historian and writer Avenal McKinnon who played a pivotal role in making the Field Collection what it is today. We are also grateful for the donation of $150,000 towards the project from Coastlands Shoppingtown. The main exhibition Gallery will be known as the Coastlands Gallery.

Our final Friends of Mahara event for this financial year takes place on 21 May. Thank you to Friends Convenor Diana Loubser and her new committee including Pam Knox, Jan Nimmo, Carole Sweney, Shirley Clarke and Ann Dempsey for their enthusiasm and commitment to growing the Friends in support of the gallery redevelopment.

We also welcome Sandra Smillie, Kate Hartmann and Alex Rundle-Keswick, who are helping us to keep MAHARA iti open, and welcome Tonchi Begovich back to the Mahara Board, representing the Waikanae Community Board.

Ma te wa, stay safe and well
Janet Bayly