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Garage Project: The Art of Beer exhibition

July 30, 2019

Life is always busy, but it’s good sometimes to pause for a moment and take stock of the things you’ve done. The Art of Beer started as a means of showcasing some of the wonderful art and talented artists Garage Project has worked with over the years. But the act of going back through the catalogue of beers we’ve produced, discussing how they were conceived, giving context and talking about the process that went into producing each piece of art has offered a nice moment of reflection - like looking through a family photo album.  

At last count we’ve brewed over 400 different beers. Just over 100 of them have made it into this book and together they create a kind of potted history of Garage Project told through the art of each brew.

Back in 2011, when we were first starting out, a marketing expert warned us that our decision to use unique art for each beer was tantamount to brand suicide. The accepted wisdom was that your brand needed to be clearly visible from five metres away. The message was clear: embrace branding, or the Garage Project’s ride would be a short one. We chose to ignore this, and looking through the art in this book, I’m so pleased we did.

One of the cornerstones of our philosophy at the Garage is that beer should be fun, and when I look through the riot of styles, colours and concepts that come to life on the pages of this book, I feel we’ve lived up to this ethos.

Great beer art only elevates the experience of drinking a beer. I’m a strong believer that every beer should tell a story. When you engage with a beer, the experience begins well before you open the can or bottle. The art draws you in, you want to pick it up and look at it more closely. Read the blurb on the label and it draws you in further, then finally, crack it open and pour it out (or drink it straight from the can). For us, it’s a holistic experience we take pride in.


Of course the real stars of this book are the amazingly creative people — the graphic artists, tattooists, game designers, painters, illustrators and typographers — who have worked with Garage Project in creating these beers. Many are local, testament to the creative culture of Wellington, but there are also an increasing number from around New Zealand and overseas. As I write this, we’ve got dozens of projects in the pipeline that could easily claim a place in this volume, but you’ll just have to wait to see (and drink) those! 

In the meantime, to celebrate The Art of Beer launch you are invited to an exhibition of selected artworks we will be holding at {Suite} Gallery on Cuba Street as part of the Visa Wellington On a Plate festival Aug 03, 11:00am - 6:00pm and Aug 04, 11:00am - 3:00pm. It’s free, swing by and check out full size prints and original paintings of some of the Garage’s favourite brews and join us in celebrating eight years of wonderful and unique beer art. Head here for more info.

Huge thanks to all the artists we’ve worked with over the last 8 years, to our own Tim for suggesting we make a book, to Penguin Random House for helping us get this over the line and to Wellington On a Plate for hosting this exhibition as part of their awesome festival.

Win a Garage Project presents Burger Welly prize pack!

To celebrate the launch of The Art of Beer, we're giving away FIVE Burger Welly vouchers. To win the lot, fill in the form below. Winner drawn Friday 2 August at midday.