Posts Tagged 'Waikato Museum'

News Update 12 June, 2014

Having just come back from Australia, I have been thinking about New Zealand museums and galleries in relation to international issues. It seems that there are some common threads, especially the focus on ethics and standards, and communicating the various forms of ‘value’ that museums and galleries contribute – cultural, creative, economic, amenity, social, educational etc.

At MA14, Auckland Museum presented research they have undertaken with Auckland Council to measure the Social Return On Investment (SROI) for the Moana – My Ocean exhibition. This paper has now been peer reviewed and published, showing a dollar value for SROI.  We expect to have videos of the MA14 keynote speakers, including Ganesh Nana’s exploration of economic and other ‘value’ on our website next week.

In Australia there has recently been publicity about dubious provenance of items acquired by museums. The National Gallery of Australia is embroiled in an international legal battle after it was found that an item it had bought from a New York based dealer Art of the Past was in fact stolen. It has subsequently come out that the NGA bought several million dollars worth of items from this dealer, as did other major museums internationally. A meeting of the four peak museum sector organisations in Australia has issued a joint statement on ethics in collecting to highlight the importance of due diligence and maintaining the highest possible ethical standards.

In China, the museum-building spree is running into problems with fakes. According to state media, 299 new establishments registered last year, but fakes are said to be rife in its antiques market. Police shut down the Lucheng museum, in the north-eastern province of Liaoning, after finding almost a third of the 8,000 items on display were not genuine. Counterfeits on show included a sword touted as dating from the Qing Dynasty and worth 120 million yuan (£11m), the report said.

The local news has been mixed, with the struggling Katikati Museum closing, and minimal damage from a potentially disastrous fire at Waikato Museum. Coincidentally, we had a fire evacuation drill at the MA office this week.  When did you last have a fire drill? Do you hold them regularly?

Kiwi North has secured $370k from Lotteries towards its $700k stage 2 development, Lopdell House is on track to open later this year as Te Uru Waitakere Contemporary Gallery, and in Ashburton locals have flocked to an open day to in the new museum and art gallery building ahead of fitout for opening later this year.

Curator Tryphena Cracknell at a floor talk for Momo Kauae: Moko Kauae in Contemporary Art

More good news stories include kuia featuring in exhibitions at Aratoi (Kuia: Kiri Riwai-Couch) and HCAG (Momo Kauae: Moko Kauae in Contemporary Art), the Sarjeant Gallery reopening in its temporary premises on Sarjeant on the Quay, and the new extension at Tairawhiti Museum has opened.

Creative New Zealand is consulting on a review of its support for visual and craft/object art, with responses due on Wednesday 25 June.  This is an important opportunity to have a say on the structure which affects how funding is distributed, and how.  A number of museum and gallery professionals took part int he focus groups whcih preceded the darfts reports which are now out for response. MA will be making a response, and we encourgae all who have an interest in Creative NZ’s craft/objecta dn visual art forms to read them and respond.  If you want to feed into MA’s response, please let us know by Friday 20 June.

And a reminder that ICOM New Zealand is calling for abstracts for the Pacific Connections conference in Auckland, 22-23 September 2014, which will focus on Pacific museum collections and research. Abstracts are due on 16 June 2014. Proposals for the 2014 National Digital Forum are also due on 16 June.

Ngā mihi,
Phillipa and Talei

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News Update 1 November 2012

Kia ora,

Recent weeks have seen news of a wide range of shows and activity around the country. Dunedin Public Art Gallery has staged music and ‘exhibition’ snooker, the Muka Youth Prints continue their annual tour, The Kauri Museum has planted 127 heritage roses and celebrated their 50th anniversary, and ‘yarn-bombers’ have given a new look to the statue of CJ Monro outside Te Manawa and the Rugby Museum. The Police Museum is getting international attention after one of its 100-year-old criminal mugshots went viral on social media as a ‘babe’. Waikato Museum is negotiating the tricky business of a Lindauer painting being revealed as a fake.

The famously good looking criminal from the Police Museum website.

Auckland has been celebrating Art Week with a huge number of events. The Walters Prize has been awarded to Kate Newby, whose winning work you can still catch at the Auckland Art Gallery until 11 November. Lopdell House has been hosting the 2012 Portage Ceramic Awards at The Cloud with Jim Cooper receiving the Premier Award.

Toitu Otago Settlers Museum is gearing up for re-opening in early December. Arrowtown has celebrated 150 years since the discovery of gold in fine style, with Lakes District Museum’s David Clarke and others growing beards for the occasion. Meanwhile, in Timaru, South Canterbury Museum’s Philip Howe has had his beard and hair shaved off for a child cancer fundraiser. We also note SCM’s ‘Downtown’ exhibition reported in the Timaru Herald, with photos of Timaru and Timaruvians as they used to be. We love the public toilets camouflaged with native plants for the royal visit in 1954!

Not fit for the Queen’s eyes? The men’s toilets on the corner of Strathallan and Stafford Streets, decorated for the visit of the Queen in Jan 1954.
South Canterbury Museum image, 2004/232.10

Work has begun on the new War Memorial Park in Wellington. The park is being built in preparation for New Zealand’s First World War Centenary (2014-2018) commemorations http://WW100.govt.nz/ and is due to be complete by Anzac Day 1915.  There has been speculation about what might be found during excavations for the park, and archaeologists and historian are looking forward to finding out.

War Memorial Park Turf Turning Ceremony on Monday in Wellington

In the political arena, rumbling continues over local government amalgamation, with a proposal for a ‘Lord Mayor’ for Wellington Region. The government’s Local Government Act 2002 Amendment Bill, which will pave the way for further mergers, has just been reported back by the Local Government and Environment Select Committee. The Committee was unable to agree that the bill be passed, and has only recommended amendments on which all committee members agreed. There was no agreement on changing the statutory purpose of local government, which would remove the ‘four well-beings’. The different party views are explained in the Select Committee Report. Apparently to counter some of the government’s changes to local government legislation around council responsibilities, costs and transparency, Labour is introducing 3 Member’s Bills, including one to prevent councils from charging for basic public library services. This bill is due to have its first reading in Parliament before the end of the year. LIANZA is supporting the bill with a ‘keep libraries free campaign’.

Directory of New Zealand Museums and Galleries 2013
All museums and associates should have received a copy of their entry to confirm their details. Thank you to those who have already sent their response. If you have not received your listing details please contact directory@museumsaotearoa.org.nz ASAP.

Museum Sector Survey out this month
A reminder that our sector survey is currently running until the end of this week. If your organisation has not yet not taken the time respond we would encourage you to do so. Whether you are a large organisation or a small volunteer run museum your participation is important as it will enable us to gain a thorough understanding of the sector and the issues that museums face, and it will ensure your organisation is included in the information available to help lobby the government for greater support and recognition of the sector. We are interested in understanding the diversity within the sector and the range of issues that museums and galleries face. Your contribution will help provide a more comprehensive and accurate picture of New Zealand’s museum sector.

If your organisation has not received an invitation by email, or you have any queries, please contact the MA office.

MA13: Hamilton, 10-12 April 2013
We are still looking for speakers for the MA13 conference. We would love to hear from you with any contributions, ideas and suggestions – all welcome! You can download this information as a pdf, and please telephone, email or come and visit us with your ideas.

For your online enjoyment, check out the wide range of museum Hallowen activities, especially on Facebook MOTAT, Puke Ariki, Whanganui Regional Museum. And we were intrigued with Mark Johnson’s technique of photographing time.

Nga mihi, Phillipa & Talei

News Update June 26

Kia ora ,

It has been another busy couple of weeks, with newspapers reporting council funding decisions, new exhibitions and other museum sector activities – including citizens and politicians in Dunedin debating renaming of Otago Settlers Museum, the Sarjeant Gallery’s partial closure due to earthquake risk, and Te Papa paying $1.5 million for the piano Michael Parakowhai made for the Venice Biennale. Auckland Art Gallery has added to its haul of awards, including the NZIA 2012 NZ Architecture Medal and Chris Saines’ CNZM in the Queens’ Birthday Honours, this time scooping three of the 2012 NZ Property Council Awards – Rotorua Museum only got one.

Statistics survey(s) current and coming up
We have mentioned before that MA is working on a bigger and better sector statistics project. This is now scheduled for August, and museum and gallery organisations will soon be contacted to ask for your input. This is a vital piece of work for all of us – each institution needs to have such data for its own planning, and sharing it enables everyone to gain a better understanding of the bigger picture into which we all fit. MA has engaged researcher Lisa McCauley to run the survey, whom some of you might know from her time as Auckland Museum’s research manager, and we’ve convened a small reference group to ensure that the project is robust, authoritative, useful and accessible. We’re also working with key stakeholders such as MCH and ATTTO as both providers and users of our sector information.

Staff appointments – Waikato, Rotorua, Waitangi, Palmerston North, Auckland…
Waikato Museum has welcomed new Director, Cherie Meecham, lately Deputy Director at Rotorua Museum, and will shortly farewell Deputy Director Andy Lowe to take up the Director’s vacancy at Te Manawa. Now Rotorua is now to also lose its Director, with Greg McManus to become Chief Executive of the Waitangi National Trust in early August. So we anticipate a bit of movement around the country, with a record 17 vacancies advertised in May, and senior appointments awaited at Dunedin Public Art Gallery, Tairawhiti Museum, and several at Auckland Museum.

There are plenty of interesting and useful opportunities and events coming up in the second half of this year. Training sessions for UNESCO’s Memory of the World project will be held this week and next in Wellington and Dunedin, and Auckland will host creative sector networking event Survive and Thrive in early July. November’s INTERCOM conference in Sydney has extended its call for papers until 15 July. Nga mihi o Matariki,

Phillipa & Talei

PS – we’re enjoying finding out about Matariki and all things astronomical with the Carter Observatory on Facebook – a great example of successful museum engagement via social media.


NZ Museum Awards finalists

3 April 2012

New museum developments, innovative projects and excellent exhibitions will be recognised in the 2012 New Zealand Museum Awards.  Winners will be named from among 15 finalists at a gala dinner in Wellington on 19 April celebrating the fifth annual national museum awards. 

The selection panel, including guest judges Jock Phillips and Heather Galbraith, had a hard job selecting from the record number of entries. ‘The panel had some robust debate about which entries were most deserving, which is why we have such a large number of finalists’, says Phillipa Tocker, Executive Director of Museums Aotearoa. ‘We are delighted at the quality and quantity of these projects.’

A new feature this year is the category of ‘museum and gallery development’, which recognises some major capital projects completed recently.  While the scale of the finalists ranges from the Auckland Art Gallery rebuild and MOTAT Aviation Display Hall to more modest developments at Te Manawa and Whangarei Art Museum, each was a significant challenge which has exceeded expectations. 

In the innovation and new technology category, the judges have recognised mobile phone and online projects at Auckland Museum and Christchurch Art Gallery, and Waikato Museum’s innovative temporary wall system that addresses the issue of waste and sustainability for changing exhibitions.

The exhibition category drew the most entries, and the judges were attracted to those which stretched both the institution and the audience.  Challenging subjects were explored by Museums Wellington with Death and Diversity, and Dunedin Public Art Gallery in Still Life: The Art of Anatomy.  Other challenges were logistical, with Aratoi working with iwi to borrow a significant waka from Te Papa for Wairarapa Moana, and Luit Bieringa successfully encompassing 125 years of design in a free-standing exhibition Old School New School for Massey University in Wellington.

Christchurch museums were back in the awards this year with exhibitions from Canterbury Museum and Christchurch Art Gallery.  Both affected by and developed as a result of the earthquakes, Canterbury Quakes and De-Building offered visitors exciting ways of exploring and learning from their effects.

The other major national event of 2011 was recognised in Red, Yellow and (All) Black developed by Waikato Museum.  Among so many rugby-related offerings, the judges agreed that this exhibition stood out as engaging and user-friendly for all kinds of visitors. 

The award judges, Jock Phillips, Heather Galbraith, Greg McManus and Jane Legget, said that the entries exercised and impressed them.  ‘It is rewarding to see so many creative and exciting projects being produced despite – or in spite of – the financial and other challenges facing our public museums and galleries,’ said Phillipa Tocker, ‘the announcement of the winners on 19 April will be a wonderful celebration of their achievements.’

The New Zealand Museum Awards dinner at City Gallery Wellington is part of Museums Aotearoa’s MA12 conference, Collaboration in practice.  The awards programme is proudly sponsored by Story Inc, New Zealand’s leading creator of visitor experiences.

New Zealand Museum Awards 2012 Finalists 

Finalist                Project
Aratoi exhibition: Wairarapa Moana
Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki project: gallery redevelopment
Auckland War Memorial Museum project: AQUA mobile trail
Canterbury Museum exhibition: Canterbury Quakes
Christchurch Art Gallery
Te Puna o Waiwhetu
online project: MyGallery
Christchurch Art Gallery
Te Puna o Waiwhetu
exhibition: De-Building
Dunedin Public Art Gallery exhibition: Still Life: The Art of Anatomy
Luit Bieringa exhibition: Old School New School
Museum of Transport
and Technology
project: Aviation Display Hall development
Museum of Wellington
City & Sea
exhibition: Death and Diversity
New Zealand Historic Places Trust project: Pompallier Mission
& Fyffe House interpretation
Te Manawa Museums Trust project: Te Manawa development
Waikato Museum project: temporary exhibition wall fabrication system
Waikato Museum exhibition: Red, Yellow, (All) Black
Whangarei Art Museum
Te Manawa Toi
project: Whangarei Art Museum
Relocation/Rebrand

News Update 25 August 2011

Kia ora

The news is full of openings and events, with excellent coverage of the opening of the Rugby Museum and Oceania (Te Papa/City Gallery Wellington) and lots of rugby-oriented exhibitions, as well as the people of Ashburton arguing about the future of their museum and art gallery – see the round-up in our members’ area here (you need to be an MA member to log in).

Earlier this week I attended the Human Rights Commission’s Diversity Forum in Hamilton. The presentation made to the plenary session by delegates from the weekend youth forum was especially encouraging. While they identified the expected issues of discrimination such as gender, religion and race, they also came up with solutions for including young people fairly and actively in all aspects fo society.

Diversity in practice – focus on youth

Following the plenary presentations, about 20 people gathered at Waikato Museum for the museums and galleries session. This was warmly hosted by staff at Waikato Museum, and supported by Museums Aotearoa and National Services Te Paerangi. We were welcomed on the museum’s marae ātea, and then taken through the Ngaa Pou Whenua exhibition by concept leader Moana Davey. She explained their exchange approach to concept and exhibition development, where ‘ownership’ is shared with iwi, and most of the material generated for the exhibition is to be given to the various marae at the end of the 3-year lifespan of the exhibition.

Sarah Morris shared her experience of developing The Mixing Room, a ground-breaking Te Papa exhibition developed with young refugees. Sue Superville and Kristelle Plimmer who had worked with Sarah were also there, and the project had clearly had a huge impact on their thinking. They had consciously stepped up from consultation and collaboration to co-creating, where the young subjects of the exhibition determined what and how their stories would be told. The young people’s refugee backgrounds were often traumatic, and the long period of project development raised many issues, especially in the personal relationships developed and the responsibility of museum professionals when their role blurs into social agency.

Puke Ariki curator Ruth Harvey shared what she had learned on her 2010 Churchill Scholarship study tour of the USA. Ruth had packed in visits to 30 organisations in 7 cities in 5 weeks. Although she must have been exhausted, she came back inspired with some great ways to work with young people, and has already put some ideas into practice at Puke Ariki. Ruth focussed on what is meaningful to young audiences, and how to make engagement meaningful, for instance through using museums as social spaces. Her excellent report can be downloaded from our site, here.

The fourth speaker was archaeologist Tarisi Vunidilo, who has held positions at Creative NZ, Te Papa, Waikato and Fiji museums, and is now secretary-general of the Pacific Islands Museums Association. Tarisi is particularly interested in young Pasifika engagement in museums, and highlighted the opportunities which have been developed through individual passion, personal connections, and building relationships with other organisations.

Forum attendees – from Taupo, Thames, Te Awamutu, Taranaki, ATTTO as well as other places that don’t start with ‘T’ – had a lively discussion about the issues raised. All agreed that the topic is important and fruitful, and it is very rewarding for museums and galleries when young people are actively engaged. I thank the presenters who opened their practice to scrutiny, the participants who took up their challenges, and look forward to more opportunities to inspire each other to explore meaningful engagement with young people.

On the way back from Hamilton I called in to the National Army Museum. Their exhibitions continue to evolve, with the medical services display evoking hospital smells, and Khaki and Black highlighting the Army’s active rugby tradition. They too are aware of their young audience, with signs on some tempting displays reminding parents that “we have trained our motorbikes not to climb on your children”.

A brief stop in Palmerston North was also a reminder of the looming rugby event. It was great to see the NZ Rugby Museum now fully operational upstairs in Te Manawa. The enthusiastic volunteers were very welcoming, and the displays successfully offer context and insight to their unrivalled collection of rugby memorabilia. Downstairs, Te Manawa was a hive of activity, with staff installing new permanent exhibits before its final stage opens in late September.

All the best to everyone as the kick-off draws near!

Ngā mihi,

Phillipa

International Museum Day 2011

MEDIA RELEASE
Issued by Museums Aotearoa
17 May 2011

I remember when…

Memories can be clear or fuzzy, recent or distant, personal or received, happy or sad. It is the accumulation of memory that informs our view of the world. When we collect memories from others, from those that have existed in the past and the now, we enrich ourselves with a deeper understanding of our world.

This week, museums around the world are celebrating International Museum Day with the theme of ‘Museum and Memory’. All kinds of museums collect and exhibit object which tell stories – sparking, sharing and connecting memories from different places and times. The experience of shared memory can be a powerful tool to help individuals to operate collectively as a unified society. Museums have an important role to play in this process, helping people to reflect upon the society in which they live.

Memory is not just reminiscence for the old. While some museums reach back into the distant past, others offer immediate experience which can trigger personal reflection, or be the foundation for new memories. Historical objects and contemporary art are all part of the interplay of object and memory discovered through a visit to a museum of any kind.

Whanganui Regional Museum is combining the theme of International Museum Day with celebrating NZ Music Month. They have a series of events which include concerts on New Zealand’s first barrel organ (1829), ballads and chamber music, indigenous and imported musical traditions – all stirring memories which reflect the rich heritage that contributes to ‘New Zealandness’ today.

At Waikato Museum, the opening of the touring Anne Frank exhibition has been timed to coincide with International Museum Day. This exhibition focuses on the written memories of one individual in extraordinary circumstances, reminding us that sharing another’s memories can help us to understand and learn from history.

An even more personal approach is being taken at the Colonial Cottage Museum in Wellington. Visitors are invited to bring along their own memories, especially those triggered by some of the more intriguing objects in the collection, and share them with museum staff.

Access to collection objects – and to the memory they embody – is being enhanced at Te Papa, with a new loans web page to be launched on International Museum Day. Other museums and galleries around the country are offering free entry, talks and tours, and all will be sure to evoke and enrich memories for those who visit.

Media enquiries: Phillipa Tocker Executive Director, Museums Aotearoa Mob: 021 606 135 phillipa.tocker@museumsaotearoa.org.nz

Further details

New Zealand museums and public galleries care for more than 40 million items relating to New Zealand’s history, culture and creativity. Generating in excess of 1000 public exhibitions and publications and attracting well over 8 million visits each year, museums and galleries are currently ranked as the top attraction for New Zealand’s overseas visitors.

New Zealand museums are actively focused on enriching their communities by enhancing the quality of their facilities, collections, programmes, products and services.

The last decade has seen unprecedented growth in the establishment and development of museum facilities and services in most regions of New Zealand. Over 3500 people are currently employed in New Zealand museums, and at least twice that number of volunteers. Total annual museum operating and capital expenditure is well in excess of $300 million.

Museums Aotearoa strives to be the strong, objective, fully representative voice for the evolving museum community, and to promote a shared sense of professionalism, solidarity and identity.

ICOM

     

An objects from Colonial Cottage Museum, Wellington


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