Angus Muir Design 9 Matt Liggins Studio 3 Xmas Pavilion

  • Pou Auaha / Creative Directors
    Angus Muir, Matt Liggins, Barbara Holloway
  • Ngā Kaimahi / Team Members
    Chris Titford, Eric Ngan, Jarrod Barrow, Hannah Walker, Warren Pene, Rob Jones, Marc Logan, Leith Mcfarlane, William Martel, Billy Wallis, Luke Foley-Martin, Chris Browne, Fresh Concept, Alistair Munro, Harris Keenan, Simon Holden, Theatrical Solutions, Infinitum Studio
  • Kaitautoko / Contributor
    Heart of the City
  • Client
    Auckland Council

Auckland loves celebrating Christmas in the city. However, since the iconic and oversized Santa who for 60 years kept an ‘eye’ over the coming of summer was put to rest in 2020, central Auckland has lacked a sense of the spectacle of Christmas.

A new Christmas installation for the public to celebrate the festive season and help activate the wonderful new Te Komititanga was required by Auckland Council.

Christmas is all about spending quality time with whanau and loved ones, to come together with people from across the motu and overseas, to welcome visitors and neighbours and to celebrate community.

We wanted to create a space to bring all the diverse people in Auckland together in this amazing new urban square, to celebrate what we love about the festive season, and help open the present of a new Auckland together!

The Pavilion was sited next to the newly opened, restored historic Chief Post Office at the lower end of Queen Street in Te Komititanga square and was placed at the centre of the paved whāriki (welcome mat). The vibrant and lively temporary pavilion remained in place from late November until early January. It transcends generations and beckons all Aucklanders to the city centre.

The public affectionately named the pavilion ‘the Pav’ and variously described it as a festive chess board, Santa’s kaleidoscope and a rainbow Parthenon.

The pavilion’s form is derived from a large white Christmas gift box which has illuminated coloured gifts contained within it. The pavilion is multi-use which is both sculptural and representative of the Christmas spirit, but also provides shelter and enables both organised and more spontaneous performances and more passive use to take place within it.

The Pav was so loved, it is going to be installed again for Christmas 2023.
Hopefully the role that the Pav played in activating this new public space, starts a precedent of a new urban revolution in Auckland, improving urban space though design, complementing the CPO/CRL and the Commercial Bay as new and old components of the exciting future of Auckland’s city centre.

Merry Christmas everyone! We hope you enjoyed the Pav and will continue to embrace and celebrate it with us for the next 60 years!