Massive Kiwi art collection goes on sale

Massive Kiwi art collection goes on sale

Fancy a Hotere, a Hammond or a Frizzell?

Christchurch's Centre of Contemporary Art (COCA) is selling its entire collection of New Zealand art works as part of a change in direction, and it's a chance to get your hands on a piece of New Zealand art history.

Every single historical piece of art, from Bill Hammond to Ralph Hotere, is up for auction. COCA is selling all 180 works, big and small.

"To have an historical collection like this no longer fits with the future vision for the gallery," says COCA board chair Kristina Pickford.

Some are expected to fetch a couple of hundred dollars. The most expensive is likely to go for $10,000.

"We've had a huge amount of enquiry from the UK, from Hong Kong and from Australia," says auctioneer Rob McKeller. "We've just had the High Commissioner call us with regards to wanting to telephone."

Last month COCA reopened its doors following repairs after the Christchurch Earthquake.

They now want to focus on supporting -- commission and exhibiting new works by contemporary artists only.

"It is a really big change, it's the end of an era," says Ms Pickford. "But it's really exciting. It's a really exciting change for Christchurch and for the arts, and the ability to be really agile and really cater to these emerging contemporary artists."

The complete collection will be auctioned off next Tuesday, a chance for art lovers to snap up a piece of New Zealand's art history.