Archive for March, 2013

News Update 26 March 2013

Kia ora,

Recent events in Wellington include the return of the found and restored Jim Allen’s Christ figure to Futuna Chapel in Karori. This is a tale of museum intrigue and successful salvage by some very dedicated supporters of Futuna, and the day was suitably moving as well as celebratory.  The restoration was carried out by Carolina Izzo, and Greer Twiss made new nails and crown of thorns to replace those that were lost. Carolina is also involved in a new initiative to share conservation experience and expertise between New Zealand and Italy.  The first offering of the Sybillam Project is a study tour to Italy in October/November 2013 in conjunction with Victoria University’s Professional and Executive Development programme.

Nationally, the Arts Foundation launched Boosted, a new arts-focussed crowd-funding website which is specially tailored for New Zealand and aligns with tax exemptions for charitable donations. Initial projects include the Christchurch Art Gallery who want to Populate Christchurch with Art.

Waiheke Island has always been at the forefront of environmentalism and do-it-yourself activism. The Waiheke Community Art Gallery has been making a splash with its BYO BAG project. US artist Dianna Cohen has worked with plastic as an art material for years, and is now combining that work with a campaign to raise awareness and encourage action to address the global problem of plastic pollution. They have a Facebook page as well as an exhibition and lots of events and activities.

Dianne was interviewed by Lynn Freeman on Radio NZ’s Nine to Noon. See also the Plastic Garbage Project.

The AAM’s Future of Museums latest Trendswatch 2013 is now out. You can download it here but be warned – it is some 20MB which took me 10 minutes to download on inner-city broadband. We’ve saved a smaller version which we can email to you if you contact the office.

The National Digital Forum (NDF) has started 2013 with renewed activity. They have launched a monthly e-newsletter, and you can subscribe at: Membership of NDF is free for any organisation that is interested in being part of the ‘digital GLAMS’, and is a great way to keep up and share in this collegial networking forum – and the annual conference in November is always a buzz.

April 1st is not only a day for pranks, but also the day when several tax-related law changes come into effect (we won’t comment on the correlation). The main changes are:

  • students loan repayments rate rises from 10c to 12c in the dollar
  • Kiwisaver minimum contributions for both earners and employers rise from 2% to 3%
  • the minimum wage rises to $13.75 per hour, or $11 for youth or those in training
  • ACC work levy rates rise in some categories, including ‘museum operation’ from $0.30 to $0.32

Find out more at these websites: Student loans and Kiwisaver: or ACC levies:

Reminders: as we count down to MA13, the NZ Museum Awards and the MA AGM in Hamilton next month, please note that

  • Museum members have been sent information on voting for Board vacancies, this needs to be done online by 10 April or in person at the AGM
  • There are interest group workshops and a free public lecture (followed by a welcome function) on Wednesday 10 April
  • The main conference days are 11 and 12 April, including 2 keynote speakers and the 2013 Museum Awards dinner
  • You can still register for MA13 – check the website or contact the office.

We’re looking forward to seeing many of you in Hamilton,

Nga mihi, Phillipa, Talei and the MA13 team


News Update 12 March 2013

Kia ora,

We have been consumed by conference preparation over the past fortnight, with barely time to keep up with the news.  There have been some lovely and well-deserved tributes to Ralph Hotere, including one by Elizabeth Caldwell on The Big Idea, and another by Jock Phillips for Te Ara. With less publicity, the former MAVtech has had an open day to celebrate its redevelopment as the Foxton Museum of Film and Sound. A comprehensive Manawatu Standard article (2 March) is not online, but the MAVtech Facebook page has some images.

National Visitor Survey

Thank you to those who are participating in the National Visitor Survey. Some museums have completed both the interviews and the data entry, and some are about to start interviewing. A quarter of museum members are participating this year, and it’s not too late to get involved. If you’d like to join the 2013 National Visitor Survey, please contact Jeremiah by email at

Membership 2013 membership certificates have gone out this week to all paid-up Museum and Associate members. Membership certificates can be used as proof of membership for grant applications and the like and can also be displayed in your entry to advertise your association. Individual members are sent 2013 stickers or new cards when we receive payment – these entitle you to membership card benefits. Anyone who has not renewed will be removed from the active membership list.

Ngā mihi, Phillipa & Talei

International Day of Solidarity: Bosnia-Herzegovina cultural institutions close

Monday 4 March was recognised by museums around the world as a day of solidarity to protest the closure of seven major national museums in Bosnia-Herzegovina. Cultureshutdown was marked by the symbolic ‘closure’ of key exhibits, in which at least 225 museums took part.

Auckland Museum marked the day with a guest blog post by Phillipa Tocker, Executive Director of Museums Aotearoa.  In his introduction, Auckland Museum Director Roy Clare deplored museum closures as a short-sighted measure. “Museums add value in the lives of people: the right of access to material culture, to artefacts and heritage collections is a basic human necessity. People deprived of understanding their past stand very little chance of being able to make sense of their future”, he said.

Aotearoa New Zealand has a huge range of museums and galleries, all contributing to our communities in various ways. We hope that we would not let such a disaster happen here.

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