Two-metre tall glitter cake for gallery birthday

Celebrated and award-winning artist Reuben Paterson is creating a colossal, glittery cake for the Govett-Brewster Art Gallery’s 50th birthday street party.

Paterson, best known for his giant tree The Golden Bearing which has previously been a huge hit at the gallery and the TSB Festival of Lights, has been working on the cake for two months.

The two-metre tall behemoth uses 5kg of glitter and will be the centrepiece of the community party, which marks 50 years since the gallery first opened its doors.

“I don’t want to spoil the surprise but all I can say is once the cake is activated people will be blown away,” Paterson says.

The two-metre tall by 1.8-metre wide cake includes a number of tiers and includes fabrics and dresses dating from the 1970s to the present day in honour of the 50-year celebrations and of Monica Brewster.

“We have all been on a beautiful journey with the Govett Brewster Art Gallery so the fabric patterns and floral designs, which are all painted in glitter, share their own genealogy of swirling curls that come to represent these journeys.”

While Paterson’s artwork is not edible there will be cupcakes to mark the anniversary and a brew created by New Plymouth firm Shining Peak, Mrs Brewster NZ Pale Ale, will also be served to party-goers.

Co-directors Aileen Burns and Johan Lundh said it’s been anything but a piece of cake for Paterson as there’s been a lot of hard work in creating this piece of art.

“Together the Govett-Brewster Art Gallery and Reuben are celebrating an important milestone as we mark 50 years.”


  • The party is on Saturday February 29 and runs from 3pm to 9pm on Queen St.
  • There’s live music from Dictaphone Blues, Hans Pucket, Serious Happiness, O Juliet & Charlotte Johansen.
  • There’ll be food trucks as well as a bar.
  • Party-goers can participate in and interactive art work The Cell by Brook Andrew and take part in workshops.
  • The party will see the world premiere for Len Lye’s Sky Snakes kinetic sculpture.