• Various Artists

How would you describe the 1980s to someone today?

Face Time: Portraits of the 1980s is all about that ‘Big Eighties Energy’ that we have come to associate with the decade. The hair, clothes and faces, are recognisably of that time. Face Time also traverses some of the tectonic social, political and economic shifts that occurred during the decade. Like a John Hughes movie, the eighties could be characterised as a coming-of-age story for Aotearoa.

Whether it was thinking big with Muldoon, the 1981 Springbok rugby tour protests, Lange’s ability to smell uranium, coming-out with the Homosexual Law Reform Act in 1986, Rogernomics or concluding the decade with the sesquicentennial celebrations of Te Tiriti o Waitangi in 1990, the 1980s was a period of immense change–a decade that might be described as a struggle between the past and the future. Face Time is a show that speaks to some of these major events using works from important public and private art collections made by many well-known artists during the 1980s.

Opening Hours

  • Open daily, 10.30am – 4.30pm


  • Shed 11, Wellington Waterfront
  • 60 Lady Elizabeth Lane