Guy Ngan: Windermere Apartments, 1975

Artist: Guy Ngan
Title: Untitled
Medium: Aluminium, light fittings
Dimensions: H970 x W2480 x D200mm
Date: 1975
Original location: Windermere Apartments Foyer, 6 The Promenade, Takapuna, Tāmaki Makaurau Auckland
Architect: TBC
Current location: In situ
Heritage status: No known protection


Ngan’s wall sculpture for Takapuna’s Windermere Apartments was perfectly designed to fit in harmony with the apartment’s sleek modern interior. Fully functional, it is an exceptional example of Ngan’s technique of creating wall sculptures with built-in lighting.

The work features five lake-like holes, perhaps a reference to the apartment’s name (Windermere is one of several lakes in England’s Lake District National Park) and the proximity of the apartment building to Lake Pupuke: a renowned geographic feature of the area.

Guy Ngan: NZ Wire, 1980

Artist: Guy Ngan
Title: Untitled
Medium: Stained & varnished chipboard, wire, screws, rods (aluminium or acrylic tbc)
Dimensions: W3045mm x H1000mm x D350mm
Date: 1980
Original location: NZ Wire (now Pacific Steel), 5 Beach Rd, Favona, Tāmaki Makaurau Auckland
Architect: TBC
Current location: In situ
Heritage status: TBC


Little is known about the commissioning circumstances behind this work. If you have any information, please let us know.

Guy Ngan: BNZ Queen St, 1973

Artist: Guy Ngan
Title: Untitled
Medium: Woodcarving: Kahikatea; Mural: TBC
Dimensions: TBC
Date: 1973
Original location: Bank of New Zealand, Queen St Branch, Cnr Queen & Victoria Sts, CBD, Tāmaki Makaurau Auckland
Architect: TBC
Current location: Missing
Heritage status: No known protection


Guy Ngan created both a kahikatea carving and mural for a temporary BNZ branch on Queen St, which had been set up while the main branch was undergoing alterations. The carving was inspired by the Auckland landscape with its volcanic cones and craters. The mural consisted of at least four panels and was installed directly opposite the woodcarving.

We haven’t been able to pin down what happened to Guy Ngan’s kahikatea carving and mural for the BNZ Queen St branch. Please contact us if you have any information.

Thanks to BNZ heritage for their assistance with this research.

Guy Ngan: Newton Post Office (Star), 1973

Artist: Guy Ngan
Title: Star
Medium: Bronze
Dimensions: TBC
Date: 1973
Original location: Newton Post Office, 300 Karangahape Rd, Newton, Tāmaki Makaurau Auckland
Architect: Mark-Brown Fairhead & Sang, commissioned by Ministry of Works & Development
Current location: In situ
Heritage status: No known protection


The Newton Post Office was commissioned by the Ministry of Works and designed by architects Mark-Brown Fairhead and Sang. Wellington-based artist Guy Ngan created Star, to adorn its façade, and it has remained in situ since 1973. It exists as companion piece to Ngan’s Newton Post Office Mural (1973), which is now in the collection of Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki.

The piece was originally backed with brown tiles, but these were removed due to deterioration.

Guy Ngan: Reserve Bank, 1972

Artist: Guy Ngan
Title: Taiaha
Medium: Bronze with integrated lighting system
Dimensions: Approx. height 9.14m (30ft), weight 1180kg (2600lb). Exact dimensions & weight unknown
Date: 1972
Original location: Reserve Bank, 2 The Terrace, Te Whanganui-a-Tara Wellington CBD
Architect: Ministry of Works
Current location: In situ
Heritage status: TBC


In 1970 Guy Ngan left his job with the architectural firm Stephenson & Turner to focus solely on his arts practice. It was in this year that the Reserve Bank ran a competition to select a sculpture for the exterior wall of its new head office. Ngan entered Taiaha, and won the competition.

Taiaha is made of 50 interlocking parts, and weighs more that one tonne. For Ngan, the work symbolised the bank’s solidity and strength, symbolised by the inclusion of two stylised taiaha (Māori weapons used in ceremonial challenges and, historically, in battle). An article in 1972 noted that this work was the biggest bronze sculpture mounted in Wellington since the War Memorial horse and rider.

Guy Ngan: Invercargill City Council Administration Building, 1971

Artist: Guy Ngan
Title: The City Centennial Mural
Medium: Aluminium
Dimensions: Approx. W3962mm (13ft) x  H2438mm (8ft), and weighs almost 317kg (700lb).
Date: 1971
Original location: Invercargill City Council Administration Building, 101 Esk St, Waihōpai Invercargill
Architect: TBC
Current location: In situ
Heritage status: TBC


In 1969 Invercargill held a competition to select a new artwork to mark the South Island town’s centenary. Guy Ngan won the competition with a scale model made in polystyrene, leading to the creation of this work.

Completed and installed in 1971, the work was cast in Wellington using aluminium donated by COMALCO that included some of the first batch produced at the Bluff foundry.

Installed behind the main reception desk of the Invercargill Council’s Administration Building, the work was said to depict, in a highly stylised and abstracted form, “the development of the Invercargill City from rural to an industrial and commercial community.”

The work was deinstalled and put into storage before being reinstalled in 2020.

Guy Ngan: Automobile Association House, 1971

Artist: Guy Ngan
Title: Unknown
Medium: Aluminium relief with integrated lighting system
Dimensions: Approx. 14.63m (48ft) in length and 46.45m² (500ft²) in area. Exact dimensions unknown
Date: 1971
Original location: Automobile Association House, 164-166 Willis St, Te Aro, Te Whanganui-a-Tara Wellington
Architect: TBC
Current location: Unknown
Heritage status: TBC


Cast locally by T & E Foundries, Ngan’s wall sculpture for Automobile Association House was 48ft (14.63m) long, weighed around 1000lbs (453.6kg), and was backlit at night by concealed lighting. The connected circles symbolised mechanised wheels, while the linear patterns portrayed a roading system. One passerby commented, “I don’t like modern art but that looks like bits of car parts.”

In April 2000 Ngan noted that the work had been “mutilated”, possibly as it had been cut down to accommodate a verandah which had been added to the facade of the building.

The current whereabouts of this work is unknown.