100 years of the Alexander Turnbull Library Mīharo Wonder.

Mīharo Wonder: 100 Years of the Alexander Turnbull Library

26 February to 9 October | National Library Gallery, Ground floor
Mon to Fri — 9am to 5pm | Sat — 9am to 1pm

What does the word ‘wonder’ – or ‘mīharo’ – mean to you? It could be something that is amazing, fascinating or astonishing; it is also to think, speculate, meditate. Discover wonder in this Alexander Turnbull centenary exhibition.

Explore Mīharo Wonder online

Explore 100 years of collecting at the Alexander Turnbull Library.

This online exhibition was created to accompany the Mīharo Wonder exhibition held at the Library from 26 February to 9 October 2021.

Start your online visit of Miharo Wonder

Enjoy some of the themes featured in the exhibition.

Looking for wonder

Mīharo Wonder is the result of a sustained encounter with the collections, and is both a personal and curatorial response to them.

It reflects the passions of Alexander Turnbull, merchant and collector, and acknowledges the generosity of thousands of subsequent donors. It is indebted to the record of scholarly and imaginative enquiry into the meaning of the library’s collections.

‘Wonder’ is many things: astonishment, the piquing of curiosity, a question raised – but it comes only through our willingness to be transported to other times, places and perspectives.

People standing on a bridge with luggage.
Log bridge, Coal Creek, c. 1900. Artist unknown Ref: G-172. Alexander Turnbull Library.

Mīharo Wonder education programmes

Prepare to be inspired by our Mīharo Wonder learning programmes! Created by our friendly Ako team, choose between the ‘Artistic Response’ or ‘Curator for the Day’ programmes. These programmes can be completed onsite or online, let us know your preference when enquiring for further information.

Our programmes have been created with curriculum level 4 in mind, but can be adapted to suit your learners needs. If your students are year 6 and below, we recommend booking in for the ‘Artistic Response’ programme.

Artistic response — 60 minutes

Which items in Mīharo stand out to you? What do you notice and how does it make you feel? Respond to these questions and more and create your own interpretation with arts and crafts.

Curator for the day — 60 minutes

Ever wanted to curate your own exhibition? Now’s your chance! Be a curator for the day and create the exhibition of your dreams.

General visit to Mīharo Wonder — 30 minutes

If you prefer to bring your class for a general visit to Mīharo Wonder, we offer 30 minute tours of the exhibition. This could also be added to a tour of He Tohu.

Get in touch with our team at for further information or to book in for the programme of your choice. We look forward to hearing from you soon!

Email us — bookings@hetohu.nz

Two young women looking at a display case at the Mīharo Wonder exhibition.
Visitors enjoying the Mīharo Wonder exhibition. Photo Mark Beatty.

Mīharo Wonder events

Have a look at the events held during the Mīharo Wonder exhibition.

Mīharo Wonder events

Mīharo Wonder in the media

Te hīkoi toi: The wonderful world of collections — Stuff

170 objects to make you marvel: Mīharo Wonder: 100 Years of the Alexander Turnbull Library — WellingtonNZ

One hundred years of the Alexander Turnbull Library — Stuff

170 wonders from the Alexander Turnbull Library — RNZ, Standing Room Only


The Mīharo Wonder exhibition is proudly sponsored by the Turnbull Endowment Trust and the Te Puna Foundation.

The Mīharo Wonder online exhibition is proudly supported by Boost.

Logos, Boost, Te Puna Foundation, Turnbull Endowment Trust