Posts Tagged 'Roger Fyfe'

News Update 1 April 2011

Taking in the enormity of the Japanese earthquake and tsunami is difficult. The latest message from ICOM Japan on 30 March estimates that there are 400 museum in the areas affected. Information is scarce as access is so limited, and they do not yet know what the future options might be. Of 144 museums whose current situation is known, some museums are safe, and 31 very seriously damaged – ‘some museums were vanished by the Tsunami’. You can read Professor Mizushima’s message uploaded on the nzmuseums blog here.

There is a lot of talk now about the economic effects of the Christchurch earthquake. While our situation may not have the global ramifications of the disaster in Japan, there will still be a major impact on New Zealand’s economy. The howls of anguish as the IRB decision to move the Rugby World Cup games from Christchurch was announced, show how vital tourism is to us. Recent statistics show that not only has international tourism been hit by the global financial crisis which began in 2008, but domestic tourism is also suffering.

Compared to the previous year, figures for the year to December 2010 show:

  • domestic overnight trips fell by 3.8% to 16.1 million
  • domestic day trips fell by 6.5% to 29.a million
  • spend by domestic travellers fell by 1.1% to $8.8 billion.

Many of our museum and gallery visitors are New Zealanders from outside the local area, so this decline may result in lower than predicted visitation for some. For the latest data see

In other research, Suzette Major and Rose Gould-Lardelli are conducting a study of arts management, in particular the role of arts managers and the career paths and general characteristics of those who manage artists or arts organisations in the New Zealand creative industries. Even if you are not currently an ‘arts manager’, your views could contribute to this research – or you could forward this request to other people you know in the arts management field.  Here is a link to the survey:

Roger Fyfe, Senior Curator Anthropology at Canterbury Museum, delivered the 2010 McMillan Brown Lecture series in Christchurch last November. These are now being played on National Radio. The first in the series, ‘Who Owns the Past?’, aired on Sunday 27 March, and surveys the development of museums in New Zealand in the 19th and 20th centuries. If you missed the broadcast, I highly recommend that you download or listen to this fascinating lecture on the Radio NZ website here.

And for those who are interested in images of post- (and pre-) earthquake Christchurch, there is very good high re aerial imagery here.

We’re now in final count-down to the MA11 conference in Nelson. We are expecting around 150 delegates and speakers, and looking forward to some insightful discussion, catching up with friends and colleagues, and having some fun as well. We will be announcing the winners of the 2011 NZ Museums Awards, and electing new Board members at the AGM. Election and voting information will be emailed to members next week.

Kia ora ano,

Phillipa and Sophie


News & Notice 23 November

Check out the latest batch of museum news that has been uploaded today, online here (you need to be logged in to the members’ area to view).

Lots of news coverage this fortnight, most of it good. There are a few items which don’t reflect so well on the museum sector – we can count on the media to dig any dirt they can find to make a ‘good story’. They seem to have nearly forgotten the Canterbury earthquake, and even the steampunk revolution in Oamaru has become less newsworthy as they scramble for tidbits about Hillary family artifacts, and flash cars for museum directors. Check it all out here.

Last week we were in Christchurch for the quarterly MA Board meeting, and had a very enjoyable function at Canterbury Museum with members from the region. It was a pleasure to be there for the launch the new regional Outreach service based at Canterbury Museum. Eva Huismans has taken up this part time role, which will complement the work of NSTP’s Judith Taylor, through direct links with Canterbury Museum expertise. The same evening, Senior Curator Roger Fyfe lead some of us on a fascinating tour of the anthropology store, explaining the rationale and workings of their recent re-housing project. Roger is currently delivering the 2010 Macmillan Brown lecture series in Christchurch on the topic, ‘The World Under One Roof – who owns the past?’ These will be broadcast by Radio NZ in the new year.

Philip Howe, Director of South Canterbury Museum, Anthony Wright, Director of Canterbury Museum and Lynda Wallace, Director of Akaroa Museum at the MA members function, and launch of Canterbury Museum’s new Outreach Service.

While we were in Christchurch we saw, rather too briefly, some great exhibitions. Ron Mueck at the Christchurch Art Gallery will certainly evoke a response – the craftsmanship is exquisite and his choice of subjects and manipulation of scale tests our view of ourselves alongside our fellow human beings. The ‘Heart of the Great Alone’ at Canterbury Museum is a magnificent collection of photographs of Antarctica from the Royal Collection. Beautiful, poignant and intriguing, we wished we’d had much more time to see them all. And a quick visit to The Physics Room was all we had time for – well worth catching new work by contemporary New Zealand artists Geoffrey Heath and Sriwhana Spong, and a pity we couldn’t stay for the artists’ talk.

Back in Wellington the TENNZ network met at Te Papa last Friday, a very collegial and productive meeting. As well as sharing information and ideas about touring exhibitions, they discussed climate controlled cases for display and transport, and iPads and iPods as the new generation audio guide – and much more affordable and user-friendly. Peter Sarjeant, Director of Exhibitions and Programmes at Te Manawa, has taken over from Stephen Pennruscoe as chair of the network, and their next meeting will be during the MA11 conference in Nelson.

Here in the office, we’ve been busy writing and compiling information for the last two publications of the year – the final MA Quarterly and the 2011 Directory. Thank you to everyone who has sent in articles and details. These, more information about MA11, and the new individual membership information will be arriving in your postbox before the Christmas break.

Ka kite,

Phillipa and Sophie

Museums Aotearoa Tweets

Join Museums Aotearoa


%d bloggers like this: