I’ve written two blogs, Help Wanted and More Help Wanted, about photographs from Te Papa’s collection that need more information. Here are some more puzzlers you may be able to help with: Dream Car It would be good to pin down the year for this photograph by dating the cars. WeRead more

There was a high level of interest in my last blog about photographs from Te Papa’s collection that require more information. So here are some more where we need your sleuthing skills: Disappearing Waterfall? What happened to the Kakahi Falls, on the Whanganui River, not far downstream of Taumaranui? This photograph appears in many aRead more

Photographs tend to come to museums with little or no information attached.  The ones below are planned for use in an upcoming Te Papa book on our photography collection. You can help us flesh out some detail on these old photos before it gets locked down in print. Military ManRead more

The image above is my favourite from a WWI album with photos by NZ soldier Herbert (Bert) Green. The group seems just perfectly composed. There is also the sense of it being two photographs somehow layered together, with another scene unfolding quite independently behind the soldiers. The way the hat of theRead more

It is with sadness and regret that we learned that photographer Glenn Jowitt died suddenly on 22nd July. Glenn is best known for his photography of Pacific people and their cultures, both in New Zealand and in the Pacific Islands. Glenn was born in 1955 in Upper Hutt. He studied artRead more

When I was nine or ten I used to go to Jenkins Gym in Manners St, Wellington on Saturday mornings with a friend. I hated it but I suspect our respective fathers thought we needed toughening up. The good bit was that after the long trolley bus trip home (noRead more

If you are feeling nostalgic you are probably sentimentally yearning for a period in the past – for a happy, simpler time. But the past often thinks about the future, and its sometimes naïve and romantic imaginations can make you feel nostalgic too. Here’s Bernard Roundhill 1956 vision of Auckland in the yearRead more

When Captain Cook’s Endeavour sailed into Whitianga harbour in 1769 Maori thought the ship was a god, and the people on board tupua, strange beings or goblins. This was confirmed as they rowed ashore, for the way they faced opposite to their direction of travel suggested they had eyes inRead more

In mid-2013 a creature that looked like a rabbit, squirrel or rat in a NASA Mars rover photograph was spotted by a blogger. The photograph quickly went viral, to the point where it started attracting news media attention. This isn’t the only animal seen in Mars photographs either. A lizardRead more

“For thousands of years man has gazed up at the moon and wondered.” That’s roughly how those worthy documentary commentaries begin, isn’t it? Well, Te Papa’s forerunner museums responded to this curiosity in two acquisitions almost 100 years apart. The first was an 1873 photograph of the moon made by the Great MelbourneRead more

In October 1957 the Soviet Union launched the first human-made spacecraft, Sputnik I. The USA had already announced that it would be launching a satellite and so existing plans for an elaborate device were quickly ditched by the Soviets to get something up in space first. Sputnik was simply aRead more

When I was in my first year of secondary school the headmaster, a teacher of English and social studies, had to take our science class because the science teacher had resigned. One day we were doing a session with a microscope and he cried out, “Quickly, have a look atRead more