No Language Barrier


Te Toki Haruru (Charles Koroneho)

Refinery ArtSpace
Thu 20 Oct - Sat 29 Oct (not Sun, Mon)

Ko Te Ākau is a visual arts installation and curated performance programme for live and virtual spaces, created for group and solo performances, within a design accurate, site-specific installation of lighting, sound design and video projection. The project references the collaborative works of artists Ralph Hotere and Bill Culbert and serves as the inspiration for exploring the poetics of Te Ākau, the space where the ocean meets the land, where the horizon connects land, water and sky.


Various Artists

Whakatū Nelson CBD
Thu 20 Oct | 5.00 pm - 9.00 pm

Opening night, spring time, longer days. What better way to celebrate than watching our city unfold after dark? Night Vision returns to kick off our 11 days of unmissable arts experiences.


Qiane Matata-Sipu

NMIT, G Block
Thu 20 - Sun 30 Oct (not Mon) | 8am - 5pm
Opening 20 Oct | 4pm

NUKU: The Exhibition features a selection of larger-than-life-size images of 14 of the kickass Indigenous wāhine who appear in Māori storyteller and photographer Qiane Matata-Sipu's extraordinary self-published book NUKU, which was a finalist for the 2022 Ockham NZ Book Award for Illustrated Nonfiction.


Created by you!

Whakatū Nelson CBD
Thu 20 Oct - Sun 30 Oct

Let’s paint the streets of Whakatū in bright colours and showcase our community’s diversity and creative superpowers! We are working with local businesses to create displays of fantastic creations old and new - and we'd love you to contribute. Submit your own creations for the showcase or send us photos - we’d love to share them with far and wide!

THE SENSORIUM - A Community Performance

Chloe Loftus Dance

Whakatū Nelson CBD
Thu 20 Oct | 6.30 pm - 8.00 pm

Join ‘The Sensorium’, a mass movement performance for this year's Night Vision. Amateurs and professionals, experts and the curious - all are welcome to learn this simple choreography and be a part of this magical community event.


The Suter Art Gallery Te Aratoi o Whakatū

Thu 20 Oct - Sun 30 Oct | 9.30am - 4.30pm

Experience selected works from Te Papa’s summer exhibition - Rita Angus: New Zealand Modernist | He Ringatoi Hou o Aotearoa - alongside contemporary Aotearoa painter Selina Foote this Spring.


Karolina Serrano

Cultural Conversations
Thu 20 - Sun 30 Oct (not Mon) | Various times

For this installation, led by their Artistic Director Karolina Serrano (from Colombia), the creative community weaves connections and create a space-filling installation of thread and hands coming together in the spirit of community, hope and unity. Watch it evolve over the course of the Festival.


Kim Ireland

Refinery ArtSpace
Thu 20 - Sat 29 Oct (not Sun, Mon)

In te ao Māori, tāne and wāhine once lived in balance with each other, and all other beings who originated from Ranginui and Papatūānuku. Gender and sexual diversity were normalised but colonialisation brought a strict gender hierarchy and static sexual identities. With the power of pūrākau and whakapapa, this exhibition attempts to draw forth mātauranga Māori of gender and sexuality.


Various Artists

Brook Waimārama Sanctuary
Sat 15 - Sun 23 Oct
Winner announced + auction: Sun 23 Oct

We have an all-new Sculpture Symposium for you! Our friends at the Brook Waimārama Sanctuary are hosting Sculpt Nature, celebrating human connections to nature through the sculptural arts. The event has a strong conservation theme, with the participating sculptors creating works which use only natural materials and fiber and reflect on their relationship with nature.


Viewfinder Bank Lane + Nelson Arts Festival Office (Morrison Square)
Thu 20 - Sun 30 Oct

We’re thrilled to collaborate with this inspiring kaupapa and host a second Viewfinder Window in our Festival office at Morrison Square, in addition to their other home on Bank Lane, between Trafalgar Street and Montgomery Square. 

Come see the view change in a street near you - unexpected experiences in otherwise familiar spaces! 


Nerys Ngaruhe

Broads Field
From Fri 21 Oct, throughout the Festival

Want Whakatū to have more public artwork which speaks to what matters to our rangatahi in this moment in time? We may have just the thing for you!

In partnership with Nelson College, artist Nerys Ngaruhe will work with local rangatahi to co-create a mural on Broads Field, celebrating toi Māori, street art and youth voices in our community.


Umar Zakaria

The Boathouse
Mon 24 Oct | 10am, 1.30pm, 6pm, 8pm

Does the time of day bring out different capacities of our human spirit? Tui-winning jazz bassist Umar Zakaria presents the Sun Song Suites, four concerts exploring the human construction of time through our relationship with the sun.


Legs On The Wall

Port Nelson
Mon 24 Oct | from 2PM until late

High above the harbour, suspended by a crane on 2.7 tonnes of ice, a figure - isolated on a melting platform - struggles for balance. As sunset approaches what will be left? We are confronted and inspired by their determination to adapt and survive. There's no time to waste.

Over eight hours in one day, Legs On The Wall brings death-defying beauty to the current climate crisis, with THAW.


Annea Lockwood

Secret Location
Sun 30 Oct | 8.00 pm

In 1968, legendary Aotearoa-born composer and deep listener Annea Lockwood set fire to an irreparable upright piano on the banks of the River Thames in London.

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