The massively popular Rise exhibition staged at the Museum in 2013–2014 celebrated urban arts emergence as a truly global phenomenon. 

In the years since then, street art has been legitimised and embraced by Ōtautahi as an uplifting point of difference in the city’s rebuild.

The museum has kept much of the original Rise artwork and these will once again be revealed alongside those still on display.

For the first week of the exhibition, artist Benjamin Work will create a huge 330 sq metre mural extending across the floor and up the two end gallery walls. The artwork is a response to Work’s exploration of iconography finely carved onto Tongan ‘Akau tau (war clubs) in the museum’s collection.

Work hopes that the mural will act as a conduit between the museum’s Tongan collection and Ōtautahi’s Pasifika communities, reviving an aspect of kupesi (motif) that has disappeared from Tongan visual language.

Visitors to the Museum will be able to watch Benjamin create this work over a week from Monday 12 April.

The works in the gallery will be on display until 6 June 2021.