Exhibitions and collections


Exhibiting widely throughout New Zealand, including 12 solo exhibitions, as well as overseas in Sydney, Melbourne and London, Avis Higgs firmly established her place as a prominent New Zealand artist with a formidable work ethic.

1944: Avis’ first painting exhibition held at the Contemporary Art Society of NSW, and her first textile design exhibitions held in Sydney and Melbourne.

1949: Exhibited at The Gallery of Helen Hitchings, Wellington – New Zealand’s first dealer gallery dealing exclusively with contemporary New Zealand art.

1951: Avis’ textile designs exhibited at the British Colour Council, London.

1954: Avis’ textile portfolio exhibited at the New Zealand Academy of Fine Arts, Wellington.

1956: Avis invited to exhibit her paintings in Christchurch with The Group in Christchurch (founded in 1920s as an alternative to the city’s conservative art societies) – see the programme.

1956: Avis’s first solo painting exhibition held at the Architectural Centre Gallery, Wellington.

1960s: Works included in Painting exhibitions held in Wellington the New Zealand Academy of Fine Arts, and the Architectural Centre Gallery, which was established as part of a crusade to bring modernism to the Wellington community. Guest artist at Dunedin Public Art Gallery and Solo exhibitions at the Canterbury Society of Arts and the Bett Duncan Gallery in Wellington.

1970s: Guest artist at the Suter Gallery, Nelson; Solo exhibitions at the Settlement Gallery, Wellington; John Leech Gallery, Auckland; Lovell House, Levin; and Canterbury Society of Arts as well as being elected onto the Council of the New Zealand Academy of Fine Arts; and was an inaugural member of the Watercolour Society (now Watercolour New Zealand).

1980s: Three joint exhibitions at the Antipodes Gallery, Wellington; Joint exhibitions at Te Aro Gallery, Wellington and Solo exhibition at Ward Gallery, Raumati, along with exhibiting at the Academy and the Watercolour Society exhibitions.

1990s: Works included in 'The 80s show' at the Dowse, Lower Hutt; Statements Gallery, Napier; and Raumati Arts Society.

2000: ‘Avis Higgs: Joie de Vivre’- a travelling exhibition, curated by Douglas Lloyd Jenkins and organised by what is now known as MTG Hawkes Bay displayed an extensive range of her textile designs from her Sydney work and the Portfolio she designed in Wellington.

2006: New Zealand Academy of Fine Arts, Wellington – a retrospective exhibition of her painting ,along with some recent reincarnations of her textile designs (a Dilana rug and a Starfish dress).


Avis Higgs’ work is represented in New Zealand’s major galleries, as well as in private collections in New Zealand and overseas. Her work hangs in government departments, schools and purchased for display in New Zealand embassies in Tokyo, Washington and London.

Galleries which have collected paintings by Avis Higgs are: