Courtenay Place Park

A New Zealand first, Courtenay Place Park light boxes form a highly public exhibition space in the midst of Wellington’s central city environment.

The eight 3-metre high steel and glass LED light boxes were designed as an integral part of the Courtenay Place Park and were unveiled in May 2008.

The light boxes encourage people to reflect on this busy and diverse urban centre, even if just for a minute.

Each exhibition lasts for four to six months.

Current exhibition:

Lost in the air 2019, Gregory Kan, Sarah Maxey

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Lost in the air

Courtenay Place Park Light Boxes
Ana Iti, Ellyse Randrup, Gregory Kan and Sarah Maxey

Curated by Chloe Geoghegan

10 June 2019 – 2 September 2019

Four local and independent artists with complex, new and enduring relationships to Te Whanganui-a-Tara Wellington have collaborated to create two encounters or readings of the urban nature of Te Aro, central city Wellington.

Chloe Geoghegan asked these four creative practitioners to collaborate, creating dual readings of the city, and new ways for Wellingtonians to navigate the creative fabric of the city. Ana Iti often brings text into her work as a visual artist to explore narrative. For one side of the light boxes, she tells the story of Waimapihi, a bubbling stream / awa buried below Wellington — lost but not forgotten. Currently based in Europe, young Wellington designer Ellyse Randrup delicately illuminates this story with a new typeface based on Iti's text. She imagines this text being gradually etched away under the street surface as a misty memory of the stream.

On the other side of the lightboxes, Gregory Kan's prose about Wellington emotively captures this complicated, bustling and populated urban environment. Kan's text imagines people passing each other by on the street, the wind whipping up around them, capturing their many thoughts and feelings, to be lost in the air and in the moment. Designer Sarah Maxey overlays Kan's texts on her photographic interventions - cyanotypes taken just around the corner on Cuba Street, illustrating a place for Kan's words to live within.

Iti, Randrup, Kan, and Maxey find ways to seek and disrupt moments of ambiguity and familiarity through the minutiae of life, bringing these imaginative, everyday and random encounters of the street to reveal the city's own graphic language.

Call for proposals

We are calling for curators and artists to propose new light box exhibitions for our 2020/2021 programme.

We are also calling for Matariki light box proposals from Māori curators and artists for exhibition during the Matariki festivals in 2020 and 2021, as a time of renewal and an acknowledgement of the natural cycles of the universe. Each exhibition will run for approximately 4 months each, from early 2020.

The deadline for all proposals is 5pm, Wednesday 23 October 2019.

For more information, see exhibition opportunities.

Past projects

For information on previous Courtenay Place light boxes exhibitions, see: Past projects

More information

Meredith Robertshawe, Senior Arts Advisor

Phone 021 227 8207
Email meredith.robertshawe@wcc.govt.nz