Te Papa Remembers Michael Volkerling

E te rangatira, e te totara haemata, e te pou matua i whakapau kaha ki te tiaki  i nga mahi toi me nga whare pupuri taonga o Aotearoa, haere, haere, haere atu ra.
Kua ripia kua haehaea mai te tau o te ate i te mamae, i te paapouri o te ngakau i te rongotanga ake kua mate koe. kei te hotuhotu te whatumanawa mou e te rangatira.
Maringiringi ai te kamo, pakinikini at te mamae. E moe marire mai.

It is with sadness that Te Papa acknowledges the passing of Michael Volkerling.

In his role as Executive Director National Museum and National Art Gallery, between 1988 and 1993, he oversaw the amalgamation of the National Museum and National Art Gallery, and the development of Te Papa.  He was ideally placed to fulfil this role, having been Chief Executive of the Queen Elizabeth II Arts Council of New Zealand before he joined Te Papa. Michael is remembered fondly by Te Papa colleagues and was highly regarded for his keen intellect and his warm, humane leadership style.  One of Michaels lesser known, but long lasting, contributions to New Zealand was his Food for Flatters cookbooks, which sustained many a student over the years.

Michael has spent the last 20 years in the tertiary education area working in management, research and teaching. When Dame Cheryll Sotheran was appointed  as Te Papa’s first Chief Executive in 1993, Michael moved to Victoria University where he established, managed and taught the Museum and Heritage Studies Program.  This long association with museums and academia continued for the rest of his career and he trained many of the new generation of museum professionals. Following this, he became  Director, Centre for Creative Industries, at  the Wellington Institute of Technology, and then moved to Australia to take up the role of Director of Research and Evaluation at Arts New South Wales.

His academic contributions continued as a member of the Editorial Board of the International Journal of Cultural Policy and the Asia Pacific Journal of Arts Management, as a member of the organising committee for the biennial International Conference on Cultural Policy Research. He was also Principal Research Fellow at the Institute for Culture and Society, University of Western Sydney, and an Adjunct Professor at the Centre for Cultural Studies and the Creative Economy, University  of Technology, Sydney.

His long involvement and commitment to arts and culture will be sadly missed. Our thoughts are with his family at this time.

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