Buller’s Birds: The art of Keulemans and BuchananNgā manu a Buller

Over 140 years ago, two men created what remains New Zealand’s most famous book on native birds.

A History of the Birds of New Zealand combined the passion and knowledge of ornithologist Walter Buller with the talents of artist J G Keulemans. The first edition, of 1872–73, attracted subscriptions from luminaries like Charles Darwin, and a second edition was published in 1888. A less expensive 1882 alternative, the Manual of the Birds of New Zealand, included wood engravings by artist and botanist John Buchanan.

The exhibition showcases print reproductions of illustrations from the rare first edition, as well as of drawings and engravings relating to the later publications.

North Island kokako, 1865–1885, New Zealand, by John Buchanan. Te Papa (1992-0035-2279/34)

Tour schedule and availability

Buller’s Birds: The art of Keulemans and Buchanan exhibited at:

Hosting enquiries

Jake Yocum, Touring Exhibition Manager