Oceania at the Royal Academy presents one of the largest collections of traditional and contemporary Māori, Polynesian and Melanesian art ever to be displayed in the United Kingdom.

It brings together works from the ancient past through to the present day. It runs from 29 September to 10 December 2018.

The Exhibition features more than 200 items, ranging from greenstone ornaments to wooden facades, originally from New Zealand, Polynesia, Melanesia and Micronesia (most gathered over 200 years ago).

There is contemporary art from New Zealand included in the Exhibition, such as Lisa Reihana’s panoramic video ‘in Pursuit of Venus [infected]’ (2015–17), Michael Parekowhai’s piano carving ‘He Korero Purakau mo Te Awanui o Te Motu: The Story of a New Zealand River’ (2011), and Mata Aho Collective’s ‘Kiko Moana’ (2017).

Oceania explores the themes of voyaging, place-making and encounter. These themes also translate into issues for the Pacific of today and tomorrow – from climate migration and regional security to investment.

New Zealand, along with The Kingdom of Tonga and Papua New Guinea have partnered with the Royal Academy to bring this Exhibition to life. If you hold a New Zealand or other Pacific Island Passport you can attend free of charge. There is no need to book—just present your passport at the ticket desk.

Oceania interviews

Watch reflections from  some of the key people involved in the exhibition, including the New Zealand High Commissioner to the UK, Sir Jerry Mateparae.

Visit the Royal Academy’s website (external link) for comprehensive information on Oceania.

Image credit:  Tooi [Tuai], Drawing of Two Waka, 1818. Paper, 30 x 50 cm. Sir George Grey Special Collections, Auckland Libraries, GNZMMS-147.