Introducing “Te Huanui”

The Selwyn Gallery will officially take a new name on Friday, 1 November. “The te reo Māori name ’Te Huanui’, meaning the pathway, road, or highway has been presented to us by Te Taumutu Rūnanga”, explained Malvern Community Arts Council Chairperson, Philip Baldwin. “In 2018 the decision to rename seek a te reo Māori name for the gallery was suggested to the MCAC Executive, and we approached the rūnanga for their input.”

Historically “Te Huanui” refers to the network of trails that Māori settlers used to travel southwards across the Canterbury Plains. The name also suggests new trails and new pathways that will be made by future generations. “These connect well with the gallery’s mission”, Mr Baldwin continued. “We follow the historic trails of artistic technique, experience, and inspiration, and we encourage new methods, materials, and skills in the community of artists around us.”

When the Selwyn Gallery opened in 1998, it was the only art gallery to support artists in the district. “That situation has changed and we have taken the opportunity to include ‘Art Gallery in Darfield’ in our our new logo to say concisely what we are and where we are located.”


“Te Huanui” is also a reminder that language te reo Māori  is becoming more aa greater part of New Zealand’s identity in the use of words such as kai (food), tamariki (children), whanau (family), aroha (love), “Te Papa” for the Museum of New Zealand in Wellington, and “Tūranga”, Christchurch's new central library. “The Malvern Community Arts Council was a quite forward-thinking group in the late 1970s. Broadening our cultural and linguistic awareness with the adoption of the name ‘Te Huanui’, is, I believe, entirely within consistent with their own innovative way of thinking and working”.


The Malvern Community Arts Council (MCAC) is a not-for-profit community group of volunteers that is committed to develop, facilitate, and support arts events and activities in the district so that the community can fully enjoy and participate in the arts locally.

The Malvern Community Arts Council organises a number of activities in Malvern including:

  • Darfield Artweek – an exhibition of nearly 300 works held each October, now in its 38th year

  • scholarships for young artists

  • performing arts events

  • special exhibitions, and

  • workshops

Te Huanui, 17 South Terrace, Darfield
Open 10am–4pm, Tuesday–Sunday

Phone: 03 318 8702

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© 2019 Malvern Community Arts Council