Restoring our beautiful heritage flooring

Forrester Gallery facade

After more than 30 years and hundreds of thousands of visitors the Forrester Gallery street level space and stairway are to receive a well-earned facelift in keeping with the heritage value of the Category 1 listed, RA Lawson designed building.

The planned works include the removal of the old carpet and the restoration of the original polished floor boards in street level galleries, reception and stairway. In order to complete the works the Forrester Gallery will be closed to the public from Saturday 22 November, re-opening on Friday 12 December.

Forrester Gallery Director Jane Macknight says, “This project is well overdue as the existing carpet flooring is at least 30 years old. We have involved Heritage NZ in the project, which is recognition of the stunning heritage value and beauty of this building and will enhance the experience for our visitors. The project was first initiated in 2005 with the restoration of the reception and shop area on the ground floor and this is a continuation of that project. The work is also a preliminary step and consistent with current planning towards the cultural facilities redevelopment project.”

The Forrester Gallery will re-open on 12 December having had its street level galleries and stairway restored to their original heritage timber.

Curator, Alice Lake-Hammond says, “This year marks the 130th birthday of the Forrester Gallery building, the restoration of the flooring is our birthday present to this beautiful space which has given so much to this community over the decades.

“It’s an exciting start to the summer for us. We’re looking forward to showing off our new flooring and combining the reopening with the launch of our summer programme.

“This season we have The Wreck of Hope, sculptural works by Dunedin artist Michele Beevors; Ben Ohau, paintings by Ohau based painter Belinda Weir; and, Look Again, a collaborative-curation project between the Forrester and local schools featuring Colin Wheeler works from our permanent collection.“

The Forrester Gallery will be closed from Saturday 22 November and will re-open again on Friday 12 December from 10.30am.

Alice Lake-Hammond