About New Zealand Portrait Gallery

Encounter the stories of New Zealanders through the art of portraiture


Our aim is to present portraits of our peoples who, from various cultural or political standpoints, have shaped our country’s development or influenced the way we think about ourselves. Our collection is growing as portraits are donated and sponsored.

The New Zealand Portrait Gallery was registered as a charitable Trust in 1990. It was the brainchild of Bill and Judy Williams with the encouragement of the former Prime Minister Sir John Marshall. Their sterling efforts and those of dedicated volunteers have seen the Gallery grow into an institution with its own professional staff, the long leasehold of a heritage building as its Gallery space - Shed 11 – and a strong and effective Board of Trustees.

The Governor-General of New Zealand, Dame Patsy Reddy   

Trustee Emerita
Elizabeth Stringer                                    

Dr Alan Bollard (Chair)

Mike Curtis

Dr David Galler

Phillip Green

Helen Kedgley                 

Diane Morcom CNZM, CVO

Garry Nicholas

Donna Nicolof  

Richard Thomson

Eve Wallace

Hon. Treasurer
Mike Curtis

President of the Friends of the Portrait Gallery
Jane Kirkcaldie


Jaenine Parkinson

Registrar / Gallery Administrator
Talei Langley

Audience Engagement Coordinator
Melissa O'Brien


The New Zealand Portrait Gallery relies on a team of amazing volunteers to run the front of house and help out with events. We are eternally grateful to their contribution to the Gallery and would not be able to run without them. If you are interested in getting involved in volunteering with the NZPG click here to contact Talei Langley.


The Gallery relies entirely on donations from individuals and organisations for its ongoing work, and on the sponsorship of the Adam Foundation for its biennial portrait competition.

In 2010 we purchased a long term lease on Shed 11 with the assistance of a government grant of $750,000 through the Ministry for Culture and Heritage; a donation of $500,000 from an anonymous donor; $100,000 from Wellington City Council through its subsidiary, Wellington Waterfront Ltd; a grant of $10,000 from the Nikau Foundation and $120,000 raised by our Friends and supporters.

Shed 11 was refurbished in 2012, both to improve its earthquake resistance, and to provide enhanced Gallery facilities. These improvements were made by Wellington Waterfront Ltd., with the assistance of some additional generous contributions from individual donors.

For further details see the Annual Reports.