Nau Mai, Haere Mai – Welcome to our New Space!

In our new space you will find a range of information, interactive and activities designed to engage and inform our visitors about the history of Waipā. We also offer opportunities to increase engagement in the arts and craft activities.

The Museum building on Roche Street was closed in October 2022 following a seismic assessment which showed the building was vulnerable in an earthquake.

We opened our temporary space in March 2023. You may notice that we don’t have a lot of objects and taonga from our Collection on display in our temporary space. This is because we are not able to meet the stringent Museum standards of climate control, pest control and security designed to keep objects safe.

This is temporary space focuses on our Education, Research and Public Programme offerings, designed to cater to adults and children.

In addition to pursuing what we have on display you can access a range of activities and information:

  • Te Ara Wai Journeys – a self-guided tour of culturally significant sites throughout the Waipā district.
  • Search Collections Online – search over 18,000 objects from the Collection.
  • Make a Research Enquiry to access the Museum Archives.
  • Sign your children up to Tui & Tama’s Kids Club.
  • Sign up for one of our upcoming Art And Craft Workshops or Heritage Talks.
  • Book a time in our Research Room to utilise our free Self-Digitisation Service.
  • Book a time in our Research Room to have free use of our subscription.
  • Inquire about our Education Programmes for students enrolled in the New Zealand School Curriculum.

Keep updated with what is happening with the Museum by signing up to receive our free E-Newsletter or follow us on Facebook!

The ‘Curioseum’ is a place where visitors can explore a range of unique objects nested in the drawers and cupboards, from the collection. These are a bit more robust and able to contend with fluctuations in temperature. The drawers and some cupboards can be opened to reveal amazing objects. 


This space consists of three LED-lit frames where we present researched displays on various social history, local stories and events that connect to either, the overall public programme theme, or significant object in the Museum Collection. This is changed monthly and can include specific objects in cases to explain or expand upon what’s on show.


This gallery caters as an engaging space for younger children and whānau where you can chill and read one of our many books on offer, play with some games aimed for the different ages and capabilities, and participate in monthly inter-activities connected to our public programmed themes.

It’s also utilised as an extra education space for visiting schools from all around Aotearoa New Zealand learning about a number of different topics!

This gallery is the first stop on your free self-guided journey of culturally significant sites through the Waipā district. On show are images of taonga objects related to the amazing stories connected to this landscape. Map out your journey from here and don’t forget to ask about the new Te Ara Wai Journey merchandise especially created for your trip around the district.

Te Ara Wai Journeys – experience places of local and national importance, and discover unique stories told by local experts.

Past exhibitions shown in the Gavin Gifford Gallery 2017-2022


Te Mātakitaki i te hara i a Te Haranui Exhibition on show at Te Awamutu Museum! A significant exhibition commemorating 200 years since the battle Mātakitaki in 1822. At that ...


Ngā Kura o Tua Whakarere A collaborative exhibition with Raukawa, portraying the history and journey of Ngāti Raukawa. An immersive display of stories, images, taonga, audio, video and educative animations ...

He Marangai ki te Whenua Exhibition

He Marangai ki te Whenua An exhibition by Karangawai Marsh of abstract kōwhaiwhai aho paintings informed by Māori language that reflects a concept describing language immersion and the intimate relationships ...

Puāwai Exhibition

"Poipoia te kakano, kia puāwai" "Nurture the seed and it will blossom" Puāwai is an engaging creative studio workshop environment where audiences participate in various creative activities and art development ...

Formal Friday 2.0 Exhibition

Due to popular demand, we have extended this exhibition until July 2021. This is a great opportunity for all that missed out on visiting this exhibition during Covid change of ...

Formal Friday Exhibition

Our latest exhibition is what I would like to call a rapid response show- one that was created on a very short timeline in response to what is happening in ...

Te Kōpuni Kura – Te Wananga o Aotearoa

Te Kōpuni Kura: Collected Treasures of Te Wānanga o Aotearoa Te Kōpuni Kura is the name of the Te Wānanga o Aotearoa art collection. The name reflects what the collection ...


Te Ohanga Ake is a PHD exegesis exhibition describing visually, intergenerational knowledge exchange through Māori fibre arts. Te Kanawa, based in Te Kuiti, acknowledges her mother Diggeress Te Kanawa and ...

Whatu Manawa – Matekino Lawless

Whatu Manawa Celebrating the Weaving of Matekino Lawless This exhibition showcases signatures works, chosen from a comprehensive collection of kete dating from the 1980s to the present, along side kakahu ...

To The Dogs!

Back by popular demand! Explore the special relationship we have with dogs in all aspects of life! It is amazing how man's best friend has been part of our lives ...

The Divine Remains

Something blooming wonderful is here! Don't miss this beautiful blooming exhibition by David Lupton, who has been photographing pressed flowers for the past six years, constant experimenting and refining his ...

Pā Harakeke – Oriwa Morgan-Ward

The Open Artist Studio Project Te Awamutu Museum has developed a unique opportunity for artists to work with their collection. The Open Artist Studio project offers an artist the opportunity ...

It’s all about US!

A co-creative, community led exhibition! You're invited to participate in understanding what you want to see in YOUR Museum. You are asked to 'leave your mark' with coloured dots, drawings, ...

Through His Eyes – Phil Brown

Captivating imagery on show for a limited time! Phil Brown photographic exhibition curated by the Te Awamutu Museum staff, showing at the Te Awamutu Library, Community Room: Selwyn Lane, Te ...

Toi Manawa: Celebrate the heart of the Landscape

For this exhibition, the landscape is defined as a visual interpretation of the artists' creative process. New, emerging and well-known artists who have ancestral connections, work or live in the ...