Summer scholar Caitlin Lynch has taken a particular interest in a 19th-century portrait of New Zealand wars soldier Frederick Rowan that we knew very little about. Caitlin describes how a breakthrough clue, in the form of an ornate chair, led to the intriguing story of the solider’s facial disfiguration and reconstruction.
20 years ago today, on 14 February 1998, Te Papa opened its doors for the first time. The day was marked by food, music, and celebration. Hay bales laid out on the forecourt lent the occasion a rural, and particularly Kiwi, flavour. New Zealand bands entertained the huge crowds. The sun shone, and the wind blew. Author Conal McCarthy, history curator Stephanie Gibson, and ex-staff member Lauren McEwan-Nugent share their memories from the day.
When the World of Wearable Arts show is in town we like to join the festivities by handing over our shop windows to students from Wellington High School and Queen Margaret College. The year 13 fashion and materials technology students display their own striking wearable art creations as part of their course.
Scott Flutey, a summer scholar from Victoria University of Wellington, has just finished an Honours year in History. He dives into the world of stamps and postal history. I’m currently researching the Gerald Ellott philatelic collection at Te Papa as part of the three-year Soldiers of Empire research project, led by Professor Charlotte
An art gallery is a theatre where art takes centre stage. But it is also an archive, a refuge, even a hospital, says Te Papa’s Head of Art Charlotte Davy. A recent story highlighted the art collections held by Councils and the proportion of their art works on public display.