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Ashburton Art Gallery

327 West St

Ashburton | 7700

P | 03 308 1133

E |

Gallery Hours

Open Daily: 10am - 4pm

Wednesday: 10am - 7pm

Closed Good Friday, Anzac Morning and Christmas day


Snark: A Victorian Odyssey




5 November- 10 February 2019

Open Daily: 10am - 4pm

Some 10 years ago a book was published that shocked the global literary community to the quick. It was called Snark, Being a true history of the Expedition that discovered the Snark and the Jabberwock…and its tragic aftermath. The book (henceforth known simply as Snark) claimed to have found proof that Jabberwocky and The Hunting of the Snark – two of the most famous poems by celebrated author, Lewis Carroll – were not the fantasies they were believed to be, but were based on a real historical event.
The ‘proof’ was in the form of a recently discovered diary of a crew member, ‘The Boots’, that recorded an ill-considered and eventually doomed venture to capture a culinary delicacy, The Snark. Now in its 42nd (updated and award-winning) edition the
controversy around Snark still rages. Is the book – as it claims – the ‘true history’ of these events? Or is it nothing more than a cruel hoax played on gullible readers? This exhibition includes selections from the Boots’ original drawings and notes. There are also quotes from Lewis Carroll and the author of Snark, Ashburton’s own David Elliot. Juxtaposed against these artworks are artifacts which have been kindly loaned by Otago Museum and other concerned individuals that may, along with the poems, have served as inspiration for an elaborate fraud. Perhaps it is in that imaginative space between the two that we will find the truth.


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Header Image: David Elliot, The Barrister, 2016, pencil and watercolour.
Image credit: Lee Baker, Snark Cooker, 2018, mixed media.










5 November- 10 February 2019

Open Daily: 10am - 4pm

Wednesday: 10am - 7pm


11 May 2019

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Stronger Together | Celebrating Diversity

As our country comes to terms with the mosque shootings of 15 March, we have seen the overflowing…


Until 5 May



Tony Bond

Christchurch-based artist Tony Bond has brought some playfulness to our foyer space with his wall installation Croactus comprised of 51 colourful ceramic sculptures.


18 April - 18 June 2019

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In Your Likeness

In conjunction with the prestigious Adam Portraiture Award exhibition, we will be celebrating our creative community through an interactive exhibition which invites visitors to create a portrait. Visitors will be guided through the basic techniques of creating a portrait and their finished works will be added to the exhibition alongside portraits from the Gallery’s art collection.


17 April - 18 June 2019

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2018 Adam Portraiture Award

It is New Zealand’s most prestigious portraiture competition which boasts a major cash prize of $20,000 and attracts national recognition. The award is generously sponsored by the Adam Foundation and is one of the country’s longest running art prizes.