Topic: Rotorua Art Tiki–Tour (2013)
I can't recommend the 'Rotorua Art Tiki-Tour' to Tauranga art lovers enough. A short hop over to Rotorua via Pyes Pa, checking out a number of galleries and a light lunch midst the geothermal fumes makes for a most enjoyable day trip and art excursion.
First on the list is the amazing ArtBox Gallery at Ngongotaha. This gallery is a must visit and is owned by artists Paul Nicolai and Yvonne Westra.
I especially enjoy Paul's large surrealistic paintings on black builder's paper as well as his many works on canvas. Yvonne's digitally manipulated magical works of art are equally impressive.
Both Paul's and Yvonne's highly accomplished art is on display in the gallery section of ArtBox.
If you ask nicely Paul might let you see his studio and the amazing array of artworks within.
The ArtBox studio and gallery in Ngongotaha.
The next stop could be the Art Expo Gallery in downtown Eruera Street.
Artist Kristian Lomath is keeper at Number 1143 Eruera and will show you works by many different contributing artists as well as his own extraordinary abstract paintings on canvas.
Art Expo Gallery provides opportunities for beginning artists, emerging artists and established artists alike.
It's a visual feast and an adventure as you explore the many sections of the upstairs gallery which are like a maze filled with art and objects.
Elim Gallery, a few doors along from Art Expo Gallery on Eruera Street, is the logical next stop on your art tiki - tour.
The Elim Gallery is a wonderful space and has eye-catching contemporary art diplayed on its generous white walls.
I recommend visiting these galleries without hesitation.
The Art Expo Gallery in Eruera Street Rotorua.
By this time a sit down and some light refreshments might make a pleasant interlude on your Rotorua Art Tiki-Tour.
There are many eateries to choose from in the city centre before resuming with a possible visit to the outstanding Rotorua Museum of Art and History in Rotorua's Government Gardens.
At this juncture you may be 'galleried out' and be thinking of returning to Tauranga all the while knowing that there are many other art highlights to be seen in Rotorua.
I picked up an Arts Trail Guide at the information site in the centre of town and I believe this is being updated soon.
There are many other outstanding Rotorua galleries I haven't space for and I'll return to those another time.
Have fun and watch out on the road.
BTW - If you haven't been already please go and see the fantastic creativity by Tauranga artist Laurie Steer and his team at Mt Maunganui's downtown Astrolabe Bar. The retro makeover, complete with a library bar/cafe is something to behold – very, very cool.
by Pete Morris (May, 2013).
Pete Morris is an occasional painter and an art lover. He is a freelance writer with a particular interest in promoting the visual arts in Tauranga and the Bay of Plenty.
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