MTG Hawke’s Bay (formerly Hawke’s Bay Museum and Art Gallery) are beginning their move back into the Marine Parade/Herschell Street suite of buildings in Napier. After nearly 3 years away, the new $18 million building is being handed over so the staff can prepare for reopening this September. Four months seems like luxury compared with the tight timeframes experienced by some other redevelopments lately, but I expect it will fly by. We’re looking forward to seeing the new spaces as we begin planning for the MA14 conference.
ANZAC Day was commemorated around the country and attracted a good deal of media coverage for museums. There is increasing interest in WW1 and its centenary years 2014-2018, within our sector and more broadly across agencies and among the general public. It seems that since those with the last living memories have passed on, successive generations are wanting to find out about the people and events whose legacy we remember on ANZAC Day. For resources and what is happening, see the notice below and visit the New Zealand WW100 website.
Having completed and reported on the 2012 Museum Sector Survey, and run the 2013 national visitor survey, we are looking forward to other research this year. The next piece of work is a survey of individual members through Australia-based Survey Matters in partnership with the Australasian Society for Association Executives. Associations Matter – 2013 State of the Sector Study will give individual MA members the opportunity to tell us about your needs, preferences and requirements. Because this study is being run across a wide range of associations throughout Australia and NZ, we will be able to gain a better understanding of why people join associations such as ours, what we can provide to our members and how. Other participants include LIANZA and Museums Australia. The invitation to participate will go out to individual MA members in the next few days. Later in the year, Survey Matters proposes conducting a similar study of industry bodies, which would cover our museum members. We’ll keep you informed as this study and our wider research progresses.
Here in the dying city of Wellington, government policy work continues – I wonder what will happen to all the public servants when the government moves to Auckland? DIA is consulting on proposed changes to Lotteries Community Committees. Consultation is still open about financial standards, and this and other policy changes is outlined in the MAQuarterly which will be in the mail to you next week. As we build up towards the local council elections in October, we will all need to think about ensuring our sectors’ interests are understood by our candidates and voters. We’re keen to hear your suggestions and advocacy needs – please email or call us (04 499 1313) any time.
An immediate opportunity to raise profile is International Museum Day, which falls next Saturday, 18 May. With the theme of Museum (culture + memory) = Social Change, the field is wide open for interpretation in any museum context. Many museums choose this date to offer behind the scenes tours, and this year Museums Wellington are going one further – they’re taking people by bus to visit their off-site Collection Store. What are you doing on 18 May?
Phillipa and Talei