Tūrangawaewae: Art and New ZealandTūrangawaewae: Te Toi o Aotearoa

From Te Papa’s art collection comes a dynamic exhibition across five galleries. The art works here explore identity and cross-cultural exchange.


I roto i te kohinga toi a Te Papa kua puta he whakaaturanga hihiri e hōrapa atu ana i ngā wharetoi e rima. Ko ngā mahinga toi o konei he tūhura i te whakawhitinga o te tuakiri me ngā ahurea rerekē. 

When | Āhea

17 Mar 2018 – 13 Sep 2021

Where | Ki hea

Toi Art, Level 5

Cost | Te utu

Free entry


All ages


30 minutes

Accessibility | E wātea ana ki
  • wheelchair accessible

  • audio-described video in Toi Whenua

  • large neon sculpture in Janet Lilo Top 16 gallery

  • low, soft wire barriers along two walls in Colin McCahon gallery

  • seating

Tūrangawaewae suggests a foundation, a sense of belonging in this Pacific place – Aotearoa. Together, these works may help us find our own place to stand.

There are five exhibition areas within Tūrangawaewae: Art and New Zealand.

Exhibition areas

Toi whenua

Where should an exhibition of New Zealand art begin? This gallery offers several toi whenua, or sources of creativity – through sculpture, painting, film, and tapa.

Encounters | Ngā tai whakarongorua

The portraits in this gallery represent mana. Some trumpet the status of European royalty, Māori leaders, or prosperous colonial settlers in New Zealand. Others advertise the skills of the artist. All carry with them stories from the past into the present.

I stand up | Matika maranga

What difference does art make? Created from the 1950s to the 1990s, these works span a time of enormous political and social change.

Colin McCahon

A group of Colin McCahon’s most important works are on display coinciding with the centenary of the artist’s birth.

Janet Lilo – Top16

In this gallery, you’ve entered a giant, three-dimensional profile page. Lilo explores how social media allows us to shape our identities online – and reinvent the self-portrait form.

Read more about Janet Lilo – Top16

Guide to Toi Art in New Zealand Sign Language

Entrance to Tūrangawaewae: Art and New Zealand
Tūrangawaewae, 2018. Photo by Maarten Holl. Te Papa

Toi Whenua
Tūrangawaewae Toi Art galleries, 2018. Photo by Maarten Holl. Te Papa

Encounters | Ngā tai whakarongorua
The portrait wall, 2018. Photo by Maarten Holl. Te Papa

Encounters | Ngā tai whakarongorua
Exploring the portrait wall, 2018. Te Papa

Colin McCahon
Colin McCahon installation, 2019. Photo by Maarten Holl. Te Papa (145044)    

Janet Lilo – Top16
Janet Lilo – Top16 in Tūrangawaewae: Art and New Zealand, 2018. Photo by Maarten Holl. Te Papa

Janet Lilo – Top16
Writing on the wall in Janet Lilo, Top16 (installation view), 2007–18, neon sculpture, benches, whiteboard wall, selfie wall graphic, video. Te Papa

Get our newsletter

Stay in the loop about our wide range of events and exhibitions.


Follow us

Follow our social media channels for a glimpse behind the scenes at Te Papa.

Join Friends of Te Papa

Friends enjoy benefits and discounts including invitiations to previews and private viewings.



Find out how you can support Te Papa through a donation or bequest by becoming a patron.