This year marks the bicentenary of William Colenso’s birth (1811-1899). In celebration our colleagues at the Hawke’s Bay Museum and Art Gallery, Napier are hosting a bicentennial event this coming November (9 – 13 November 2011).
The aim of the bicentenary is to explore the highly complex character of Colenso ‘in the round’ – as ‘a talented polymath, at home crossing the Ruahines, providing Kew Gardens with knowledge of New Zealand plants, or writing and printing the only published eyewitness account of the signing of the Treaty of Waitangi’.
The celebrations will be centered on a two-day academic conference featuring international author and science historian, Dr Jim Endersby of the University of Sussex and Peter Wells, author of the new book The Hungry Heart – A Journey with William Colenso, as keynotes. They will be joined by 12 speakers new research into all aspects of William Colenso’s life.
An accompanying programme of events held across Hawke’s Bay, hosted by HBMAG and partners will include; a journey into William Colenso’s Napier, a tramp to the foot of Colenso Spur in the Ruahine Ranges, a Choral Evensong and Sunday Service at the Waiapu Anglican Cathedral and a exhibition, floortalk and workshop by award winning Havelock North botanical artist Terrie Reddish at the Hastings City Art Gallery.