Call for Artists

Whale Tales is on the hunt for artists to be a part of a truly magical event coming to Auckland in Summer/Autumn 2021.

For 10 weeks, Whale Tales, a public art sculpture trail exploring Tāmaki Makaurau/Auckland, will showcase 70 tails illustrated by 70 artists telling 70 tales. Each sharing the same mission: the story of a healthy ocean. It will be a fun, free, family-friendly journey of discovery throughout Auckland’s streets, parks, and open spaces during what promises to be Auckland’s most action-packed summer yet! Inspired by Hauraki Gulf resident, Bryde’s Whales, these tails will allow trail explorers, young and old, to have fun rediscovering their city through the tales these tails have to tell.

Whale Tales is presented by WWF-New Zealand in partnership with Wild in Art and Auckland Tourism, Events, and Economic Development (ATEED). The World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) has championed the conservation of animals and our environment since 1961. WWF’s goal is people living, and thriving, in harmony with nature. In Aotearoa, their work focuses on protected and restoring the mauri of our Ocean, supporting innovation, and combating climate change. The legacy of Whale Tales continues long after the trail has ended. The sculptures will be auctioned to raise significant funds for the vital work WWF-New Zealand does to look after our oceans and conserve marine life, particularly in and around the Hauraki Gulf.

The tail is a three-dimensional blank canvas created by Wild in Art. We need artists to transform it into something fantastical which will be seen by hundreds of thousands of people. We are actively encouraging submissions from local and regional artist communities. Designs, in any medium, are welcome – traditional to new media, fine art to illustrations, street art, mosaic, or whatever can be imagined!

Businesses, organisations, community groups, and education institutions are lining up to sponsor a blank whale tail. They will select their favourite design from among the submissions. Successful artists are then commissioned to bring their design to life. This is an incredible opportunity to join some of the incredible artists, and top creative minds, already on board like Michel Tuffery, Misery, and Weta Workshop.

Submissions are due by 11:59pm (NZST) on June 2020.

Download the Artist Brief or contact Art Co-ordinator, Lucy Moore, for more information:

For media inquires: Caroline Hall Bruner, Media & Content Manager

Whale Tales 2022 Art Trail