In acknowledgement of of Tuvalu Language Week which ran from Sunday 1 October – Saturday 7 October 2017, Pacific curator Rachel Yates looks at daily life in Tuvalu through five photographs taken by New Zealand photographer Thomas Andrew (1855 – 1939), who spent a significant amount of time in the Pacific region. Nine islands Whilst on a tour… Read more »

Curator Photography Athol McCredie takes inspiration from a set of photographs in our collection to explore the idea that there may be another version of you, dear reader, out there. Most of us have had to choose a photograph of our self for a passport, Facebook page, dating site, or a CV. We might have a number… Read more »

For family or for Empire? The risks of staying home during war

  • 17 October 1915
  • 15 october 1915
  • British Menagerie. The Kaiser the Austrian Emporor
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This month we acknowledge the military service of the New Zealand troops who fought in and died during the devastating Battle of Passchendaele 100 years ago. However, in this blog, history curator Kirstie Ross considers other notions of duty and service that many men, like Levin farmer Leslie Adkin, had to weigh up in the face of… Read more »

Dr Mark Stocker, Curator Historical International Art, discusses his Collections Online summaries of Te Papa’s remarkable Rembrandt holdings. Sharing Rembrandt with the world Digital technology and art history scholarship/curation are a marriage made in heaven, believe me. Over the past few weeks, I’ve written database web summaries of every Rembrandt – and wannabe Rembrandt – in… Read more »

A grisly grizzly bear tale for World Animal Day

  • Jar, 1850-1860. England. Te Papa CG000578
  • Jane Dodd, A Jungle Incident, 2014. Photo Studio La Gonda.
  • Jane Dodd, Polar Pranks, 2012. Te Papa 2012-0022-1
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On World Animal Day, which aims to bring attention to the plight of animals worldwide, Claire Regnault, Senior Curator History, explores the work of Jane Dodd – a jeweller whose exquisitely rendered work draws on the cruel history of blood sports. Blood Sports Jane Dodd is a contemporary New Zealand jeweller, who throughout her career has… Read more »

The Fall of Singapore: New Zealand perspectives

Poster, 1942, Wellington. Gift of Mr C H Andrews, 1967. Te Papa (GH014048)

On 23 September an exciting new exhibition opened at the National Museum of Singapore called Witness to War: Remembering 1942. Ten objects from Te Papa were sent to Singapore to be featured in the exhibition. History curator Katie Cooper shares some of the stories from the exhibition and discusses the significance of the Fall of Singapore… Read more »

Planning an ECE education programme for Matariki

image of teaching diagams

Matariki is an incredibly busy and exciting time for us at Te Papa as we put on a big programme of public events, and educational visits for schools. Our new ECE and family education specialist Martin Langdon was thrown in the deep end the moment he started by delivering countless educational programmes to children during this… Read more »

Adkin diaries update: Your help still needed to bring them to life

  • Screenshot of a search result in Collections Online
  • Empty paddock
  • Two women and a baby sit on a picnic blanket
  • Man stands in a field holding a scythe

An update from history curator Kirstie Ross on the progress made transcribing selected diaries from those kept by Horowhenua farmer Leslie Adkin for 40 years. Thanks transcribers! A few weeks ago I invited blog readers to transcribe diaries from October 1917 to November 1918 kept by Leslie Adkin, a Levin farmer, photographer, husband and father,… Read more »

Hit rate high in high-country forget-me-not search

  • Ant and Zuri have found the perfect spot to make some research collections for the museum, near Rainbow ski field, January 2017. Photo by Jessie Prebble.
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  • Botany girl power! Zuri, Jessie and Heidi searching for Myosotis laeta in the Red Hills, January 2017. Photo by Ant Kusabs @ Te Papa (SP105625).
  • Ant finding yet another plant to add to the collection at Te Papa, Rainbow Ski Field, January 2017. Photo by Heidi Meudt @ Te Papa.

Field work is a key part of scientific research at Te Papa. Each year, Research Scientist Heidi Meudt spends about three weeks in the field collecting specimens for her taxonomic research on native New Zealand forget-me-nots (Myosotis). In January 2017, she travelled to three main areas in northern South Island (Cobb Valley, Mt Owen and ranges around… Read more »