• Megan Dunn
  • with works by...
  • Andrew Brusso
  • Olivia Erlanger
  • Julia Holden
  • Alexis Hunter
  • Suzanne Husky
  • Brett Stanley
  • Lena Maria Thüring
  • and featuring...
  • Annette Kellerman
  • MeduSirena
  • Hannah Mermaid
  • Merman Jax
  • Julie Atlas Muz

The Mermaid Chronicles explores writer Megan Dunn’s longstanding fascination for mermaids and the world of professional mermaiding. Titled after a long prose poem Dunn wrote in the 1990s, the exhibition is a first for Te Pātaka Toi Adam Art Gallery as a mode of autobiographical curating on a topic that showcases the professional mermaid and tracks this mythical figure through high and popular culture. Dunn brings together vintage artefacts with painting, sculpture, underwater photographs, and videos by artists and professional photographers, and features several high-profile mermaid performers. She tells stories, explains art works, and quotes from the mermaid community in wall texts, a sound work and a PowerPoint presentation. Recognising the mermaid as a mythological figure that continues to capture our imaginations, she also acknowledges the ways that mermaids serve society as creatures who bridge land and sea, human and non-human, fantasy and reality. Owning up to her own preoccupations, Dunn asks us all to take mermaids seriously.

Megan Dunn is the author of Tinderbox and Things I Learned at Art School, and a reformed video artist. In the late 1990s, she ran Fiat Lux, an artist-run space in Tāmaki Makaurau Auckland. Her art reviews and criticism have been widely published, as have her essays and stories. She is the 2022 Writer in Residence at Te Herenga Waka – Victoria University of Wellington’s International Institute of Modern Letters, where she is working on her memoir about motherhood, menopause and mermaids. Lots of mermaids.

Opening Hours

  • Tuesday - Sunday 11am - 5pm


  • Victoria University of Wellington
  • Gate 3, Kelburn Parade
  • Wellington 6012