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Fashion Quarterly’s guide to Newmarket’s best-kept secrets

30 September 2021

Discover the creative heartbeat of Tāmaki Makaurau’s premier fashion, shopping and entertainment precinct.

In partnership with the Newmarket Business Association. 
Tead Street, Newmarket

Stroll down the heart of Broadway and you’ll find yourself in Auckland’s finest metropolitan shopping district. High-rise buildings meet brick-walled laneways, and sweetgum tree-lined, stone-paved streets lead you to a vibrant offering of boutiques, cafes, and restaurants. 

But it is Newmarket’s best-kept secret that is at the soul of this precinct’s buzzing heartbeat: an array of murals, towering sculptures, and kinetic installations, dotted amid some of the city’s most renowned and exciting art galleries.

It might come as a surprise to some that Newmarket’s Lumsden Green is steeped in local art history. The green oasis at the heart of Newmarket—favoured by many as a place of respite from the urban hustle and bustle—marks the beginnings of Tāmaki Makaurau’s large-scale public artworks. Marte Szirmay’s Smirnoff sculpture, situated within the reserve, was the first sizeable abstract work to be commissioned in the city—with this particular aluminium wonder a commemoration of Newmarket’s centenary. 

At the crossroads of Khyber Pass Road and Broadway, be greeted by Virginia King’s Sliver, a hand-finished, stainless steel archetypal symbol of time—a pivoting disc that bridges the space between nature and urban structures.

Ben Foster, Sliver Figure, Westfield Newmarket.
Virginia King, Sliver, corner of Khyber Pass Road and Broadway.

With a hop, skip, and a jump to the street, you’ll find a modern curation of the city’s foremost contemporary art galleries. Engage with working artists and their creations at Railway Street Studios, situated at the northernmost end of Newmarket, and watch works progress in real-time.

As you make your way back down Broadway, prepare to be delighted by what you find on the wondrous walls of Osborne Street’s ArtSelect and Sanderson Contemporary Art galleries. With back-to-back exhibitions from Aotearoa’s most celebrated artists, each visit will present you with something new.

Job Klijn, Lessons in Love, mixed media on board, ArtSelect Gallery.
Alan Ibell, View From a Window III, acrylic on canvas, Sanderson Contemporary Art.

And should you wish to indulge in locally made, artisanal crafts, look no further than The Poi Room. Representing myriad Aotearoa-born artists, the gallery specialises in a broad range of disciplines from paintings, prints, and pounamu to ceramics, jewellery, and more.

Finally, it wouldn’t be a visit to Newmarket without a stop at the Southern Hemisphere’s largest Westfield shopping centre. There you’ll undoubtedly be spoilt for choice in shopping, dining, and entertaining,  but don’t forget to pay attention to the multitude of art installations throughout—and around—the celebrated shopping centre.

Curated by aMBUSH Gallery, the collection features the works of more than 20 contemporary artists—from a striking street mural by the notorious Askew One to playful illustrations by Cracked Ink and the gleaming Sliver Figure sculpture by Ben Foster. 

Seung Yul Oh, KnockKnocks, Teed Street.
Kirsty Nixon, Tūī Tea Party, acrylic on canvas, The Poi Room.

Discover the best of Newmarket here, and read about Westfield Newmarket’s new luxury precinct here.

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