Wed, Jan 10, 2024 8:00 AM

Art for art’s sake


William Woodworth

Marlborough is a destination for artists and art lovers, as the stunning landscapes encourages artists and creative talents to set down roots.

The region also boasts a variety of art galleries that showcase the works of local, national and international artists.

Whether you are interested in paintings, pottery, sculpture, photography or jewellery, you will find something to suit your taste and budget in the Marlborough art scene.

Marlborough Art Gallery in Blenheim’s Te Kahu o Waipuna library and art gallery building provides an accessible and informative visual arts experience, with regularly changing exhibitions, programmes and events. You can see works from leading artists such as Rita Angus, Don Binney and Gregory O'Brien, as well as learn about the history and culture of the region through exhibitions such as Kura Pounamu: Our Treasured Stone.

The Marlborough Art Society has brought a more community-minded focus to the art scene at 204 High Street, Blenheim since 2000, with a rotating cast of artists, collections and mediums displayed throughout the year. Creations are displayed from painters, sculptors, embroiderers, and printmakers who make up part of the 280 strong collective. Groups meet to discuss and create in all disciplines with after school and night classes and weekend workshops, there’s something bound to interest any art enthusiast.

Brian Badcock Art Gallery is a private art gallery that displays the works of Brian Badcock, one of New Zealand's most respected landscape painters. You can admire his realistic and impressionistic paintings of the Marlborough scenery, from vineyards and mountains to rivers and coastlines. You can also purchase his original paintings or prints online at and visit his Redwoodtown gallery by appointment only.

The Gallery Havelock is a community-run gallery showcasing the works of approximately 25 local artists and artisans in the heart of Havelock. Browse a range of artworks, from paintings and prints to ceramics and woodwork, as well as purchase souvenirs and gifts and visit the ever-changing exhibitions and events throughout the year. The Gallery is based in a unique two-storey building on the Main Road in the heart of Havelock and is a must-see Marlborough Sounds destination run by friendly volunteers open daily from 10am - 4pm.

The Gallery Havelock hosts local artists from the Pelorus area in a community-minded creative centre and gift shop. Photo: Supplied

Return to Eden Gallery is a boutique gallery specialising in resin art, jewellery and homewares. You can find glittering resin earrings, pendants, rings and bracelets, as well as colourful resin coasters, trays, bowls and clocks. The gallery, based at 13 Selmes Rd in Rapaura across from St Clair Vineyard Kitchen, offers custom-made orders and workshops for those who want to learn how to create their own resin art.

Fran Maguire Pottery is a renowned ceramic artist who has been working with clay for over 40 years with her beautifully handcrafted pieces, which range from functional tableware to decorative sculptures, inspired by nature and her surroundings. You can also book a pottery class or workshop with Fran at, or purchase her pottery online.

Raukura Gallery in Picton shines a spotlight on local artists to the Marlborough Sounds and visiting pieces from further abroad in New Zealand from their prominent spot at 54 High Street, Picton. Visitors can freely enjoy a range of artworks, from paintings and sculptures to photography and ceramics, as well as browsing the gift shop for handcrafted unique souvenirs for family and friends.

Dudson Scott Gallery hosts contemporary art and artists in an entirely recycled space. The Gallery exhibits all local artists, purpose-built exhibition space supporting two galleries and a studio for resident artist Joanna Dudson-Scott’s full time painting practice. Joanna has an open invitation for anyone who wishes to experience an Artist at work on appointment at 1494 State Highway 6, Renwick.

The Dodson Scott Gallery, and resident artist Joanna Dodson-Scott, encourages interested people to dive deeper into their artistic ideas. Photo: Supplied.

For the more adventurous, Lochmara Lodge Arts Centre is situated in stunning Lochmara Bay in the Marlborough Sounds. You can access the indoor and outdoor gallery by boat from Picton, and enjoy a day of exploring the wildlife, gardens and artworks on display. You can also feed pigs, kakariki and eels, visit the underwater observatory, or relax in a hammock with a view of the water. The gallery features work from local artists and artisans, as well as workshops and residencies.

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