New street art festival to colour Tauranga’s city walls

Never-before-seen works of street art are about to burst forth at one of New Zealand’s most loved coastal resort cities.

Never-before-seen works of street art are about to burst forth at one of New Zealand’s most loved coastal resort cities.

In a first for the Bay of Plenty city of Tauranga, a group of leading International street artists have been invited to create and display new artworks during the Paradox Street Art Festival. 

Paradox is the newest event to come to Tauranga, on New Zealand’s North Island east coast. The festival will run from 28 March until the end of June 2017 and will include the Oi YOU! Collection with works from Banksy on display for the first time on the North Island. 

A group of international and local artists will create artworks unique to Tauranga which adds to an extension festival programme of public wall paints, food, music and dance. 

Paradox is described as paradoxical in its nature not only by bringing street art into a gallery but also by internationally acclaimed artists turning the city into an outdoor gallery, adding to the city’s existing display of street art.

The Oi YOU! Collection includes the most extensive assembly of the works of acclaimed street artist Banksy in the southern hemisphere.

Artistic director for Paradox, George Shaw, who is co-owner of the Oi YOU! Collection with his wife Shannon Webster, is excited to see the contrasts coming together. 

“Since 2010, we have produced a series of street art shows both in New Zealand and Australia attracting broad audiences, but this is our first on the North Island and we are fond of Tauranga, a city you wouldn’t connect with street art in the first place,” Mr Shaw said. 

“We assembled a group of outstanding artists from these shores and abroad who will come to the city to create unique installations and paint stunning murals both inside the Tauranga Art Gallery and out on the streets.”

Tauranga Art Gallery will break all the rules of the gallery space for Paradox Inside, creating a major, ground-breaking exhibition. Karl Chitham, Tauranga Art Gallery’s Director, is excited about the festival coming to the city.

“The Gallery will be transformed into an immersive street art experience with every one of our spaces dedicated to Paradox. Alongside installations by renowned street artists, we will have the Oi YOU! Collection on display featuring works by well-known and infamous personalities such as Banksy, Faile, Paul Insect, Swoon and Anthony Micallef.” 

For Paradox Outside the collective of international and national street artists, namely Askew One, Lucy McLauchlan, Sofles, Charles and Janine Williams, Jacob Yikes and late additions Rone and Fintan Magee will create a remarkable legacy in their natural habitat, the streets. 

A series of works will adorn walls across Tauranga for residents and visitors to enjoy for years to come. 

Paradox Live & Local will showcase the work of local artists and encourage interaction from across the community, bringing everyone together with events including public wall paintings, food, music and dance. 

All Paradox Live & Local events will involve the wider community, opening this urban contemporary art form to those who may not have engaged yet and to those who are already involved.

Bay of Plenty

The Pacific Coastal Highway travels alongside 125 kilometres (77 miles) of white, sandy beaches, but it’s not just sun and surf that make this part of New Zealand such a popular holiday spot with both Kiwis and international visitors. 

With a mild climate all year round and outstanding landscapes, this region has many outdoor activities and scenic attractions to accompany its rich culture. Just offshore, Whakaari, known as White Island – New Zealand’s only active marine volcano – offers visitors the chance to experience a geological wonder.

The Bay of Plenty offers some of the country's most spectacular scenery and many ways to enjoy the pristine scenery and natural wonders. Visitors also enjoy exploring the Bay’s Māori heritage and pre-European roots.