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Toihoukura – School of Māori Arts & Design is a showcase of all that is good about Gisborne and the wider Tairāwhiti region, a hub for artists to exhibit, create and share – in so many ways.

It is places like this that are slowly changing the perception of artistry, and gently rearranging the community to what it used to be in centuries gone by.

Until the 1860s Tairāwhiti was an area where other iwi came to be educated – from oral histories to tā moko. There was a time when that fell out of favour but now, that is changing. Toihoukura is the contemporary face of that tradition.

The focus of Toihoukura is to ensure the development of art forms that are specifically Māori; promoted through the development of, and participation in an arts ‘wānanga’ learning environment that encourages the personal and professional development of every student.

Toihoukura is host to some of the nation’s most recognised artists, and has also been part of the creative pathway of those who have gone on to great fame.

Maia Gallery is the central working gallery space at Toihoukura, offering a chance for students to learn all the curatorial and exhibition skills that go with being an artist. Toihoukura is one of the most respected schools of contemporary Māori visual arts and design in the world. Its students and teachers are sought out to speak, exhibit and advise all over the globe.

Patua ki Tahatū o te rangi
Strike at the horizon