It’s May already, with Christchurch still shaking and crazy weather around the country. In mid-April in Nelson, the sun shone for 2 out of our 3 conference days, and we had a great time – thanks to all who were there and all who helped. We presented the Annual Report at the AGM, and this will be posted to members later this month with the next issue of MAQuarterly.
MA11 conference links
There are some photos in our previous post, and more on Facebook, and we will add presentations to our website as they become available.
Shane Simpson spoke about deaccessioning and collections ethics. His almost completed online publication Collections Law has just been relaunched on a new website, and is highly recommended. It focuses on the subject of the business and law of public collecting organisations in Australia, and is certainly relevant to NZ as well. The Powerhouse Museum has supported the publication, and hopes it will be a useful reference guide for public museums, libraries, archives and galleries across Australia. Recently added chapters include; Philanthropy, Reproduction of Useful Things and Protection of collections during times of armed conflict.
And following the ethics theme, we discussed the very topical case of artefacts of NZ origin, which were in the collection of the British Commonwealth and Empire Museum in Bristol, which had appeared for sale through a London dealer. Some news items are in our roundup in our members’ site, and the UK Museums Journal reported the dismissal of the BCEM Director here. The NZ Listener covered it in the issue dated 16 April, but the article is not online yet. A timely case when the AGM endorsed the establishment of an Ethics Committee for MA.
2011 New Zealand Museum Awards
Congratulations again to all who made it through as finalists in this year’s Awards – and especially to the winners. We have compiled the press clippings into a separate edition here for our members, and Dunedin Public Art Gallery’s Beloved was featured on local television here
While we were in Nelson it was announced that Roy Clare, currently Chief Executive of the MLA in the UK, is to be the next Director of Auckland Museum, starting in August. His appointment is covered in the UK Museums Journal here, and in an interview with Kathryn Ryan on National Radio here. And last week Bill Macnaught, former Manager of Puke Ariki and MA Board member, took up his new position as National Librarian. On the negative side, Karen Williams (Taupo Museum) and Brian Patrick (Central Stories) have both had their roles disestablished in council cuts.
There has been good coverage of recent openings at Te Manawa and Aotea Utanganui (Patea) as well as progress on the Rotorua Museum and Auckland Art Gallery developments. Some other proposed developments are struggling against council budget constraints as the annual planning round progresses – and staff casualties have already been noted. We hope most councils will see the benefits of continuing to invest in the arts and culture as an essential part of their service to their communities.
Next up for Museums Aotearoa is the first meeting of the new Board, which will be in Wellington on 18 May. We will be looking at our various activities and projects, including accreditation and the Code of Ethics.
We have also invited all museums and members in the Wellington area along to meet with the Board and start planning for next year’s MA12 conference – and before we blink another year rolls around!
Other useful links:
“Journeys Towards a New Paradigm Exploring Collaboration and Access to Digital Artefacts in the GLAM Sector”, a one-day symposium sponsored by the School of Information Management at Victoria University of Wellington on 18 April. Video from the sessions:
Personal Journeys and Research Perspectives: Prof. Wendy Duff and Kay Sanderson
Trajectories of Technological Design: Chris Todd, Adrian Kingston, and John Roberts
“The Scary Washing Machine” Discussion Amanda Cossham, Chris Todd, Adrian Kingston, John Roberts
Linked Open Data (Part 1): Brenda Chawner
A video clip of Tim Berners-Lee on Linked Open Data which was viewed at the Symposium is available here
Looking Back at the Journey: Prof. Wendy Duff
The NZ Conservators of Cultural Material have a very user-friendly new website here which includes advice, links and a directory of conservators.
ARANZ have a status report listing Christchurch archival collections, levels of access, web/email contact and a brief description of the current situation after the February earthquake, here.