Posts categorized as History

WWI case studies of courage and despair

Thirteen unidentified WWI soldiers mending boots at Oatlands Park England,1918

In May this year, Road to Recovery: Disabled Soldiers of World War I closed, after its ten-month-long display at Te Papa. This exhibition, which explored how New Zealand soldiers disabled by World War I were supported to regain their economic independence, included 8 sepia photographs of limbless soldiers demonstrating new work skills they were taught while… Read more »

Collecting childhood: Objects and stories from kiwi kids

Maya Shaw, one of the children in Te Papa’s Collecting childhood project, 2012. Maya donated her favourite dress and an amber bead necklace, shown in the picture. Photograph by Ken Downie. Te Papa

  One thing we all have in common is we’ve all been kids. Some of us still are. But have you ever wondered how your childhood experiences might provide insights into wider society? Studies into childhood provide information about changing ideologies around parenting, social welfare, education, health and wellbeing, as well as more general trends… Read more »

Writing Gallipoli: The scale of our war – Part 2

How’s your war slang, cobber? A1 you reckon? Take the Great War Word Quiz Whence comes ‘the top brass’? The etymology of war In my earlier blog, I talked about writing from the soldiers’ perspective and creating our narrator – ‘the grunt’. An unexpected outcome was learning about the origins of many words we use… Read more »

Writing Gallipoli: The scale of our war – Part 1

Part of a letter written by a soldier named Kapper, Wellington Infantry Battalion, Gallipoli, 1915. Courtesy of Exhibition Historical Director Dr Christopher Pugsley.

In our latest Gallipoli blog, Te Papa’s Head Writer Frith Williams takes you behind the scenes with the writers of the exhibition. ‘By jove it was awful’: Writing from the soldiers’ perspective Gallipoli: the large-scale models by Weta Workshop, the powerful stories, the interactive experiences – they’ve all attracted a lot of attention. With any… Read more »

WWI: Love and Sorrow Symposium

Registrations are now open for Museum Victoria’s War & Emotions symposium, which is being held at the Melbourne Museum in September in association with the exhibition WWI: Love & Sorrow. The symposium will explore new perspectives and understandings of the emotional and physical impacts of World War I. The symposium will feature international keynote speakers Dr Tracey Loughran… Read more »

Cold comfort photography

photo camp

 It is the beginning of June in New Zealand and if you are a photographer it is the perfect time to go camping. Despite the dire warnings from his friend (referred to as ‘Titfaddle’) concerning the folly of making a six week camping trip in the middle of winter, Alfred Burton and his son Harold, left Dunedin for Lakes Te Anau and… Read more »

Building Gallipoli – the install

Rob Murphy working on the large scale figure of Sergeant Cecil Malthus. Photo by Weta Workshop.

In this Gallipoli: The scale of our war blog, Weta Workshop’s Rob Murphy talks about overseeing the installation of the exhibition. I’d only been working at Weta Workshop for about eight weeks when the first pieces of the Gallipoli exhibition started to hit the floor and work their way into the woodworking department. I still… Read more »

The Berry Boys Hit the Big Screen

Wayne Juno, a descendant of James Arthur Juno who was killed in action at Chunuk Bair.

Te Papa was thrilled to work with Production Shed TV in 2013 and 2014 on a documentary inspired by the Berry & Co. soldier portraits held in the museum’s collection. The documentary, which was originally produced for TVNZ,  features the stories of six soldiers depicted in the collection. This June, you have the opportunity to see the documentary again, but this… Read more »

One out of the glory box – An itsy bitsy teenie weenie….

Betty Curnow's bikini as worn on Shoal Bay during the 1950s. 
Photograph courtesy of Anna Miles.

Well not quite yellow polka dot but a bikini made from a shirt worn in one of New Zealand’s most iconic portraits. This treasured textile was shared by Auckland art dealer, Anna Miles, and is one of many images shared on Instagram and Twitter using our hashtags #Tivaevae #Textiletreasures   This bikini top belonged to… Read more »