Opening of the Hundertwasser Art Centre

The Hundertwasser Art Centre with Wairau Māori Art Gallery will open in Whangārei (New Zealand) on February 20th. A citizens' initiative made the realization possible, and construction began in June 2018. 
 

20. February 2022
In 1993, Hundertwasser was invited by the Whangārei District Council, represented by Mayor Stan Semenoff, to design an art gallery building in Whangārei. Hundertwasser sketched a two-storey building with an afforested roof accessible from below in the most beautiful place in Whangārei, at a water arm of the marina. Two columns, one "European" and one "Māori" at the corners of the building were intended to accentuate the facade. The existing Council Building on this square should be included in the design. The project was not pursued further and only resumed in 2008 by the Whangārei District Council (WDC) in cooperation with the Hundertwasser Non-Profit Foundation with the aim of establishing a "Hundertwasser Art Centre with Wairau Māori Art Gallery". After many years of debate, the realization of the project was decided by a referendum in 2015. The realization is thanks to a citizens' initiative, which was formed as the Prosper Northland Trust under Ian Reeves, Barry Trass and Trevor Griffiths, and the commitment of many supporters, volunteers and sponsors. 
The Hundertwasser Art Centre was built in accordance with Hundertwasser's architectural philosophy for a more human architecture in harmony with nature. 
 
The permanent exhibition "Hundertwasser in New Zealand 1973-2000" will show Hundertwasser's legacy in the Southern Hemisphere. Original Hundertwasser paintings, graphic works, tapestries and architectural models will be on show, as well as documents of his ecological commitment. The loans are made available by the Hundertwasser Non-Profit Foundation in Vienna. 
The Wairau Māori Art Gallery, the first and only in New Zealand, will show contemporary Māori art. There is also an activity center, a museum shop and a café-restaurant with a terrace overlooking the waterfront available to visitors. 
 
The Hundertwasser Art Center (HAC) is the second museum in the world to house a permanent Hundertwasser exhibition. The KunstHausWien – Museum Hundertwasser exists in Vienna since 1991.