Amy Weng


NameAmy Weng
Country of BirthAotearoa
Place of ResidenceŌtautahi Christchurch
ArtformVisual arts, Literature
Decades Active2010s, 2020s


Amy Weng is a curator, writer, and editor currently based in Ōtautahi. She was born in Tāmaki Makaurau to parents who migrated from Guangdong Province to Aotearoa in 1987 and grew up on the North Shore, eventually graduating from the University of Auckland's Elam School of Fine Arts with a BA/BFA Hons in 2013.

In 2016, Weng launched Hainamana, an online platform dedicated to contemporary Aotearoa Asian arts. After working for several arts organisations in Tāmaki Makaurau, she had found that there was interest in Asia as an external force. However, some organisations did not value or recognise Aotearoa Asian creatives as highly as their overseas peers, and only a small group of visual artists with an Asian background in Aotearoa were able to find professional success in their practices. Hainamana was a way through which Weng could collect some of these stories in order to shift these notions and showcase the strength of practice from these communities. The website — for which Weng was the founder, sole organiser and editor — published texts covering visual art, theatre, writing, design, curation and architecture. The website is currently on hiatus, and Weng is now Associate Editor at Contemporary Hum, an online platform for the critical discussion of Aotearoa artists' visual arts practices presented overseas.

Weng was the organiser of the Asian Aotearoa Artists Hui at Te Tuhi in 2017, a forum for Aotearoa Asian artists to have open discourse about their respective professional and creative fields in relation to their whakapapa. In 2018 she explained:

as artists it felt like we were still being talked about in silos: this is Māori art, this is Pacific art, this is everyone else. This seemed problematic to me as it seemed to suggest as communities we couldn’t relate to each other. So I was trying to shift that framework of how we think of ourselves and each other. And part of that was recognising that we are Tauiwi. I just wanted to create a space where we acknowledged that relationship to tangata whenua and maybe use that as a starting point to talk about art and its politics.

Weng has continued to be involved in subsequent iterations of the Asian Aotearoa Artists Hui.

Since 2022, she has been the curator at The Physics Room where she has curated projects such as My throat/a shelter, an exhibition of experimental films by Selina Ershadi and James Tapsell-Kururangi; the way things are by painter brunelle dias; Objects in Practice featuring the works of Yona Lee; KALOUGATA: under the earth by dancer, poet, and choreographer Jahra Wasasala; and Like water by water co-curated with Simon Palenski, the Director of Blue Oyster Project space featuring Carol Anne Bauer, Fiona Pardington, Suji Park, and Dilohana Lekamge.

As an independent curator, she has led projects like Several degrees of attention (2022), curated with Simon Gennard, Māia Abraham and Elle Loui August at the Govett-Brewster Art Gallery, They covered the house in stories (2021) at Te Tuhi, Remedial Learning (2017) at RM Gallery and Project Space, and a temple, a commons, and a cave (2018) at MEANWHILE.

Weng's writing has also been featured across a number of platforms, including ArtLink, The Pantograph Punch and The Spinoff as well as in books like A Clear Dawn: New Asian Voices from Aotearoa New Zealand and Dirt, a collection of writing in the form of experimental recipes.


Key works / presentations

As a curator:

2023 — My throat/a shelter, The Physics Room, Ōtautahi, Aotearoa

2023 — Like water by water, Aigantighe Art Gallery, Timaru, Aotearoa

2023 — Objects in Practice, The Physics Room, Ōtautahi, Aotearoa

2022 — the way things are, The Physics Room, Ōtautahi, Aotearoa

2022 — Several degrees of attention, Govett-Brewster Art Gallery, Ngā Motu, Aotearoa

2021 — They covered the house in stories, Te Tuhi, Tāmaki Makaurau, Aotearoa

2018 — a temple, a commons, and a cave, MEANWHILE, Pōneke, Aotearoa

2017 — Remedial Learning, RM Gallery and Project Space, Tāmaki Makaurau, Aotearoa

As a writer:

2021 — A Clear Dawn: New Asian Voices from Aotearoa New Zealand (Auckland University Press)

2018 — Dirt (Gloria Books)

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Last updated: 29 February 2024 Suggest an Edit