Programmes and events

Volunteer Programme

Do you have spare time?
Are you interested in being involved in the creative community?
Would you like to learn more about the arts?
If you answered yes to any of these questions then it’s you we are looking for!

The gallery is a publicly funded facility available to the community and visitors free of charge, 7 days a week. We are looking for people who might be interested in assisting with workshops, openings, floortalks and much more. If you have specific skills that would be of great value to the gallery, we’d love to hear from you, to become part of our new volunteer programme.

Full details of the programme are in the link below. For further information please contact Tricia Johnson, Arts Liaison and Exhibition Coordinator by email or by phone on 06 8715095.

HCAG Volunteer Application

HCAG Volunteer Agreement

Youth Art Ambassador Programme (YAAP) A chance to be heard and make a real difference to what goes on at the Gallery

YAAP 2017 artist workshop YAAP 2017 artist workshop

YAAP applications are closed for 2018.

About YAAP

Hastings City Art Gallery recognises the valuable contribution that young people make to the gallery. It is committed to creating relevant and meaningful opportunities for young people, enabling them to take an active role in shaping what happens at the Gallery. The Gallery is keen to support youth talent through providing events that raise the profile of local young people and is running a special programme for youth, known as YAAP: Youth Art Ambassador Programme.

A group of young people between the ages of 14 and 19 will meet up regularly every month from March to August 2018. We want young people’s voices to be heard and make a real difference to what goes on in the Gallery.

Upon completion of the Youth Art Ambassador Programme 2018, students will receive a Certificate of Participation.

How to get involved

Are you aged 14 to 19? Are you interested in having a say in the future of the Gallery’s programme? Do you want to gain new skills and meet new people? If the answer is yes, keep an eye out in February 2019 when we will open applications for the next Youth Art Ambassador programme, which will begin in March 2019. Places are limited and there will be a selection process once all applications have been received.

What? A chance for you to meet with other young people and gallery staff to discuss your thoughts, opinion and suggestions about the gallery as we develop our exhibitions and activities over the next two years. You’ll also will understand the diverse roles of gallery staff, giving insight into exciting career pathways. The programme also provide artists, mentorship and workshops to reinforce commitment to exceeding academic expectations with your art portfolio.

You are encouraged to share the knowledge gained during the programme with your teachers and peers – as an Ambassador for the Gallery’s exhibitions and events throughout the community.

Where? Hastings City Art Gallery- Auaha room

When? Meetings will be monthly and are usually held on Wednesday afternoons from 3:45 to 5pm.

What are the benefits?

  • Your opinions will shape the future of your local contemporary art gallery
  • Have your say in the gallery’s public programme and events
  • Develop new skills and experiences- which look great on your CV, university form or job applications
  • Learn from a variety of artists and participate in workshops with them
  • Make new friends
  • Free food and drink
  • Entry to all events and workshops at the gallery for the year
  • See what goes on behind the scenes

Interested in finding out more? Please contact Elham Salari at or the Gallery at 06-871 5095.

Hui | Education Programme

By exploring Paratene Matchitt’s exhibition Hui, students will understand the innovation and invention that led him to become one of New Zealand’s iconic artists. The programme consists of a discussion and hands-on activity.

Workshop: Students create a human figure inspired by the sculptures. Students collaborate with each other and will co-present their final works with a concept based on the idea of Hui.

  • Curriculum strands: Visual Arts, English and Social Studies
  • Duration: 90 minutes
  • NCEA: 1.2-2.2-3.2- 1.1-2.1-3.1
  • Cost: Free
  • Suitable: All levels
  • Dates: Until 18 March 2018

Paratene Matchitt is one of New Zealand’s most prominent senior artists. Matchitt’s 60-year career has seen his work in most public art gallery collections in this country. Paratene has a reputation for breaking with tradition, for innovation, and for invention.

From the 1930s artists recognised the need for an expressly New Zealand school of art that was distinct from the modernist conventions travelling here from Europe and America. Efforts to create this New Zealand language were complicated by the space existing between Māori and Pākehā art. Early on in the piece Pākehā artists were absorbing or appropriating Māori iconography, a predictable development in a search for a national artistic identity. Paratene’s willingness to incorporate European influences into his own work is described by some academics as testimony to a ‘Māori Modernism’, or by others as a ‘Māori Primitivism’. It is most certainly the case that Paratene draws from multiple artistic sources, bringing them together in a complex amalgam.

Following the Second World War, Department of Education encouraged a generation of Māori artists to draw on their cultural traditions in developing modernist art. Para was employed as an art adviser by the department and began to follow the suggestion. Para drew particular inspiration from the great Spanish modernist Pablo Picasso. He applied Picasso’s style to the representation of traditional stories such as the separation of Rangi and Papa.

Life Will Go on Long After Money | Education Programme

Sculptor Ben Pearce has installed a large-scale interactive work in the gallery. Based on the true story of a man who built himself a get-away on the boulder bank of Nelson’s inlet, Pearce’s sculpture is a fascinating revisit of the event in which Ben himself played a surprising role. In the education programme, students explore ideas surrounding the meaning of home. The programme consists of a discussion and hands-on activity.

  • Curriculum strands: Visual Arts, English and Social Studies
  • Duration: 90 minutes
  • NCEA: 1.2-2.2-3.2- 1.1-2.1-3.1
  • Cost: Free
  • Suitable: All levels
  • Dates: Until 25 March 2018

Discussion: Students will discuss what home means using these questions:

What emotions do you associate with home?

How does it feel to be away from home? How does it feel to return home?

Who do you associate with home?

Why would someone like to live away from civilisation? (Not just spatially removed, but also removed from everything society provides, including the means of survival (food, etc.) and the rule of law).

What challenges might someone have living off grid?

What memories could someone make by living away from society?

What kind of skills would someone need to learn to be able to live off grid?

Workshop: Students imagine what would happen if they had no money and want to leave civilisation. Based on that, they will design a paper house and answer the questions listed below in their design.

  • Where would you build your own house?
  • What material would you use to build your house?
  • Is it like a normal house? A tree house? A boat house? Or something else?
  • How big or small would it be?
  • What are the things you would have to have in your house?
  • What would you take with you if you were to live off grid for ever?
  • How would you find food?
  • What are the things that you can make yourself without paying money for?

Hastings City Art Gallery | Social Stories

These social stories were designed for the gallery by Kelsey Hankins, to support families and schools bringing people with Autism Spectrum Condition and Sensory Processing Condition to the gallery. Please feel free to download the stories and adapt them to your own needs.

We would also love to know if you found these useful or have any suggestions for improvement: or ph 06 871 5095.

Visiting the Gallery [older children]                                               Visiting the Gallery [younger children]

Visiting the Gallery with my School or Group [older children]      Visiting the Gallery with my School or Group [younger children]

Arriving at the Gallery [older children]                                          Arriving at the Gallery [younger children]

Everyday Lines Education Programme

In this programme we will talk about how artists draw from the world around them and alter and change the meaning of objects that we use every day. As well as a guided tour of the galleries, and discussion about the artworks on display in Everyday Lines exhibition, there will be a hands-on workshop.

Curriculum strands: Visual Arts, English and Social Studies

  • Duration: 90 minutes for Primary and Intermediate Schools and up to 45 minutes for Secondary Schools
  • NCEA: 1.2-2.2-3.2- 1.1-2.1-3.1
  • The Popcorn workshop is suitable for years 1 to 8
  • Available: 15 September – 30 November 2017
  • Cost: Free

Discussion: Students will consider how and why artists use everyday objects as subject matter.

  • Students understand how non-traditional materials can be vehicles of artistic expression
  • Students will discuss the question “Can anything be considered art?”
  • Students will reflect on how placing an object in a gallery changes the object and how calling something art can change perception of an object.
  • Students will consider the choices artists make when creating works of art, exploring subject matter and sources of inspiration, medium and style.
  • Students will make connections between consumer cultures, ready-mades and art.

Hands-on activity: The workshop activity is inspired by the Popcorn work by artist Madeleine Child. Students will make a colourful popcorn lei by using popcorn and natural dyes extracted from everyday vegetables such as turmeric, cabbage and beetroot. Students will be encouraged to reflect on their work in reference to the earlier discussion. They will be given the options to choose between eating their popcorn lei at the end or keeping it as a work of art.
Post visit project ideas:

  • Challenge students to re-create an everyday object (using a material such as modelling clay or, if possible, polyurethane foam) in a way that could trick the naked eye. Ask students what they have learned from the sculpting process. What were the challenges and how did they address them?
  • Tell students to look out for types of assemblages similar to Gaby Montejo’s work or Still Life by Martin Selman. When they find something similar, ask them to record it with a photograph or sketch. Analyse the groupings and talk about connections between the objects, layout, space etc. Are these casual and random or carefully contrived? Based on this discussion invite the students to create a new installation and photograph or draw it. Talk about the process of placing objects so that they appear to be random.
  • What other materials and processes do people use to represent real things? Ask students to be aware of the simulated objects they come across over the course of a week. These could be props on television and movies, decorative objects in homes, or even materials such as fake wood. Ask them to record these items by making notes or drawing. At the end of the week, invite students to share what they have found with the class. What techniques do people use to create these things? Do they always strive to make them seem real? Why or why not? What functions do these replicas or representations serve?
  • Ask student to bring in an object that they don’t mind turning into art- an old phone, a basket, a hairbrush, a lamp… and then work with them to create a sculptures or still life assemblages.

If you would like to make a booking for a class, or would like further information please email or contact the Gallery on 06 871 5095.

Arts for All – Hawke’s Bay

Touch tour and audio description for blind children provided by Tim Bray Productions Auckland.

Thursday 9 November, 10.30am- 12.30pm

Arts for All: Providing access and inclusion to arts and culture for everyone.

Join us for a presentation and discussion about how to make your arts project, place or programme more accessible for and inclusive of disabled people. Our speaker is Richard Benge, Executive Director of Arts Access Aotearoa.

Arts Access Aotearoa supports arts organisations and venues to increase their accessibility, builds the capability and leadership skills of grass-roots community organisations providing arts opportunities to people with a disability, raises public awareness about access to the arts and provides a national information service. It is also the lead organisation advocating for the arts to be used as a rehabilitation tool for prisoners.

Arts Access Aotearoa reaches out to representatives from live performance venues, museums, art galleries, producers and festivals – anyone who has art or cultural experiences to promote. At regional seminars participants learn the steps that accessibility champions around Aotearoa are taking, so their arts events or experiences are inclusive and accessisble for disabled people.

Arts Access Aotearoa has free useful resources for particiants to guide them on their journey – providing accessible arts and cultural inclusion for their community.

Attend this presentation to:

Ø Learn about how your organisation or place can be more accessible and inclusive of anyone who faces a barrier to inclusion.
Ø Discover a network of people and organisations working to make the arts accessible and inclusive for everyone
Ø Get access to free resources to assit your organisation, programme or event to be more accessible

For more information see:

Artist Talk: Ben Pearce

Saturday 9 December, 11.00am

Join artist Ben Pearce as he shares insights into his arts practice and his latest exhibition, ‘Life Will Go On After Money’, 2017.

Free, no booking required.

New Zealand Sign Language Week

Thursday 10 May, 2.00-4.00pm

Celebrate New Zealand Sign Language Week with our local deaf community and join artist Kay Bazzard for a sign-language interpreted clay workshop.

Free, please book.


The Take Out: A Gaby Montejo Performance

Gaby Montejo, Stuffed Weight for Takeout, 2017

Gaby Montejo, Stuffed Weight for Takeout, 2017

Sunday 26 November, 11.00am

Call it a swap-meet, garage sale, eviction or liquidation – knowing artist Gaby Montejo’s performance work, this could be all or none of the above. Don’t miss this one-off performance which will be part of the de-installation of Montejo’s artwork, Stuffed Weight for Takeout, 2017 which is currently on display in the exhibition Everyday Lines.

Free, no booking required.

Gaby’s arts practice includes photography, performance, actions, music, interviews, and temporary installation. He exhibits internationally, but has been deeply involved with social initiatives and collaborative interventions in Christchurch, and is a founding member of arts collective, ‘The Social’.