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Tāmaki Paenga Hira Auckland War Memorial Museum was shortlisted for ten Best Awards at the virtual Best Awards 2021 event, winning a total of three in the Public & Institutional Spaces, Exhibition & Temporary Structures and Environment graphics categories.
In 2021 Tāmaki Paenga Hira Auckland War Memorial Museum completed a series of major transformations to its visitor experience. After being closed for approximately 18 months, Auckland Museum’s South Atrium entry precinct Te Ao Mārama re-opened to the public with new experiences, amenities, artworks, food and retail offerings.
This revitalised space revealed the most significant changes to the Museum in more than a decade, and the vision was realised by Jasmax with FJMT, designTRIBE, and Salmond Reed Architects. The new spaces and the artworks housed within them were recognized in many different categories:
·The redevelopment of Te Ao Mārama was a finalist in the Public & Institutional Spaces;
·Hokohoko, the Museum’s retail cultural destination designed by Ignite Architects, was a finalist for Spatial Retail Environments;
·Under the tanoa in Te Ao Mārama was a finalist in Exhibition & Temporary Structures; and
·Te Tatau Kaitiaki was shortlisted in three categories Environment graphics, Spatial Exhibition & Temporary Structures and Toitanga.
In 2021, the Museum completed a series of major transformations to its visitor experience. After being closed for approximately 18 months, Auckland Museums’ South Atrium entry precinct Te Ao Mārama re-opened to its public, with new experiences, amenities, artworks, food and retail offers.
We are now thrilled to announce that Te Ao Mārama has been recognised by the New Zealand Institute of Architects at their annual New Zealand Architecture Awards. The space won acclaim in three categories: Public Architecture, Heritage and Hospitality.
Te Ao Mārama impressed the judges who described it as an exemplary project that threads a series of bold new architectural elements and integrated artworks through the accumulated layers of the existing Museum, transforming it into a cohesive entity fit for its multicultural future.
Head of Natural Sciences, Dr Tom Trnski and his team have been working with kaumātua from Ngātiwai and the California Academy of Sciences to name a new species of pygmy pipehorse - Cylix tupareomanaia.
This is the first time that an indigenous group has been formally listed as the naming authority of a new species of animal, and I know it has taken a lot of work and persistence to achieve this outcome.
Incorporating mātauranga Māori into the naming of this ocean taonga is a wonderful example of He Korahi Māori in action and of the impact our Research Strategy is having in the wider scientific community.
The theme for this year’s Mental Health Awareness Week (27 September – 3 October) is 'Take Time to Kōrero' - a little chat can go a long way. In this lockdown environment, it is more important than ever that we have regular contact and opportunities to chat to friends, family and colleagues - even if it is via phone or Zoom. I encourage everyone to make time to kōrero and focus on their wellbeing.
As part of the week, the Museum hosted a series of Zooms for all staff. We were honoured to have Jerome Kavanagh run a Puoro Māori Sound Healing session for all staff. We also held a session with Sian Jaquet, an experienced wellbeing coach, who shared some tips and techniques to help us get through the rest of lockdown and prepare ourselves for a post-lockdown environment.
2020 really was a remarkable year and this report highlights the amazing mahi Museum staff achieved together through the challenges of COVID-19. To me, this Review speaks to the resilience, creativity and passion of our whānau. He tangata, he tangata, he tangata.
It is a privilege and an honour to work with those at the Museum and lead such a wonderful organisation, that is making such a huge difference in Aotearoa and the world. Ngā mihi nui kia koutou katoa.
Read the review
The Museum's Development team has been hard at work and a number of grants have been received recently.
The Online Cenotaph team have received $10,000 from the C&L Gregory Charitable Trust, which will fund two part-time staff to work on the Archives NZ transcription project. The project will see around 9,500 service records digitised and transcribed to honour New Zealand service personnel and to make their service histories easily accessible to family, friends and researchers into the future.
The EQC has agreed to continue to fund the Volcanoes Education Programme for a further three years. With this funding we can continue to offer this programme free of change to Auckland Schools and Early Childhood Centres. Held onsite and offsite, the programme teaches students about natural disaster preparedness and recovery.
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It was wonderful to celebrate all the great mahi that went into creating our latest exhibition, Love & Loss, when the exhibition opened at the end of July.
Love & Loss is the first in a series of special exhibitions which will feature our significant Documentary Heritage collections, and is the first-ever exhibition to feature our extensive manuscript collection. Developed during lockdown, the project team has done an amazing job delivering an intimate exhibition that brings the emotional power of the written word to the fore.
Our Collections Information Access and Documentary Heritage teams have worked together to create a tailored homepage on our website to host the newly catalogued Hillary Pictorial Archive. The collection features more than 7000 photographs from Sir Edmund Hillary’s personal collection, providing a first-hand record of his world-famous international expeditions and of his family life.
In 2008, Sir Edmund Hillary’s extensive personal archive was bequeathed to Auckland Museum and we received funding to support the digitisation of the pictorial items in the collection. Recognised internationally for its importance, this collection has been placed on the UNESCO International Memory of the World Register and you can check out the new homepage here.
Explore the archive
June marked the opening of Te Whiwhinga The Imaginarium, the Museum's newest suite of learning galleries. The kaupapa for this new development is that learning through play, exploration and discovery helps build knowledge in young people in a more effective and sustained way.
Te Whiwhinga The Imaginarium is a significant shift in the way Auckland Museum engages with school students. It has been made possible by support from our generous donors, in particular the Douglas Goodfellow Charitable Trust, the Joyce Fisher Charitable Trust, the Becroft Foundation and the Maurice Paykel Charitable Trust.
Auckland Museum is immensely grateful to have received generous support from these funders who shared our vision to provide an outstanding learning experience for thousands of our Auckland tamariki.
The Museum's redeveloped South Atrium, Te Ao Mārama, has been recognised by Architecture NZ magazine at the annual Interior Awards. Auckland Museum and its architects, Jasmax (in partnership with FJMT and designTRIBE) and Salmond Reed as Heritage Architects won the Civic Award.
This acknowledgement reflects the collaborative effort between Auckland Museum and our multi-disciplinary design team to deliver new infrastructure designed to enhance the Museum’s functionality, combining mana whenua welcome, cultural orientation and generous manaakitanga. Te Ao Mārama resolves the tensions between the Museum’s monumental heritage architecture and its contemporary responsibility to social inclusion and diverse communities of interest, the Museum building has been described in Architecture NZ as ‘transformed into a space for decolonisation to begin’.
We are delighted and honoured to have received these prestigious awards which recognises the two year journey we have undertaken to transform this part of our heritage building for current and future visitors. Te Ao Mārama marks a milestone for Auckland Museum in creating a precinct dedicated to cultural welcome, orientation and tikanga. It is a uniquely Auckland design and enables us to extend the manaakitanga this Museum is known for.
We accept this award on behalf of everyone who has taken the design vision and turned it into a reality. This includes members of mana whenua and Pacific community leaders, who have advised on everything, from fundamental design principles at the project’s inception through to the final delivery of artworks.
Together they have delivered a transformation programme of multiple projects, despite the disruption and the inevitable delays caused by COVID. This is a great achievement for any organisation and a huge success for Auckland ratepayers who enable our work.
Gail Hoddinott, long time Parnell resident and Museum volunteer, interviewed Dr David Gaimster for The Hobson about living in Parnell, his role at the Museum, and what the best advice he ever received was.
In 2020, New Zealanders rose at dawn to commemorate Anzac Day in our bubbles, at our front doors and at the ends of our driveways in response to the global pandemic. In 2021, we welcomed communities back to Auckland’s war memorial, a space where people could come together to remember and reflect on the courage, commitment and sacrifice of our servicemen and women. The contemporary resonance of Anzac Day is an intrinsic part of who we are as a nation.
This year we highlight the contributions made by servicewomen in World War II and after. Thousands of New Zealand women enlisted during the war, and by 1942, 75,000 had registered with the Women’s War Service Auxiliary, representing a significant mobilisation of the country’s human resources.
2021 marks two significant anniversaries involving servicewomen: the establishment of the Women’s Auxiliary Air Force (formed 16 January 1941) and the landing in Japan of the main body of Jayforce (March 1946). The latter included members of the New Zealand Army Nursing Service, who played a vital role in the hospital service.
The legacy left by these women paved the way for the thousands of women serving today. Lest we forget.
March marked the opening of our new suite of galleries dedicated to the living history of Tāmaki Makaurau Auckland. Endeavouring to represent a city of the scale and richness of Auckland was a monumental task, and this suite of permanent galleries chronicles Auckland's past, captures its present, and looks to the future of this city.
Auckland Museum’s collection of tens of thousands of photographs by Kiwi photographer and photojournalist, Olaf Petersen, is one of five new additions to the UNESCO Memory of the World Register. This year the Museum's Pictorial Curator, Shaun Higgins, will publish a book with Auckland University Press that profiles Olaf’s career as Aotearoa New Zealand's pre-eminent 20th-century nature photographer. This will accompany the first major exhibition of this significant body of work, from the Documentary Heritage collection, in our Sainsbury Horrocks gallery in late 2021.
In February we launched a digital version of Director's Choice, which explores Auckland Museum's extraordinary collection, each item with its own compelling backstory. The original 2019 publication formed part of Scala's international Director's Choice series, and the new photography produced for that volume has now been joined by interactive elements to allow viewers to dive even deeper into the exquisite detail of some of my favourite collection objects.
READ IT ONLINE
December was a momentous month, marking the opening of our new South Atrium precinct. What you will experience in this space is the result of our deliberate intention to connect the past, present and future of this much-loved cultural destination.