New Zealanders are active participants in cultural events and achieving high standards of achievement
- New Zealanders are more engaged in cultural and contemporary issues through participation in Te Papa events and activities.
- Iwi and communities are increasingly engaged with their traditions and taonga through partnership with Te Papa.
- New Zealand's diverse communities are increasingly engaged with or have better access to or understanding of their cultures through Te Papa's collections, knowledge and research.
- International audiences are better informed about New Zealand's heritage and culture.
The Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa, known as Te Papa, was established by statute in 1992. Its purpose, as stated in its Act, is to "provide a forum in which the nation may present, explore, and preserve both the heritage of its cultures and knowledge of the natural environment in order to better understand the past, enrich the present and meet the challenges of the future".
The public areas of the Museum are housed in a new building on the Wellington waterfront that opened to the public in February 1998.
Its collections are preserved and protected and continue to grow and be added to.
It holds exhibitions, events, education programmes and debates. It has the New Zealand national art collection and regularly exhibits this for the people of New Zealand.
National Services Te Paerangi
National Services Te Paerangi is the Te Papa division that works with museums, iwi (tribal groups), and related New Zealand organisations. To make sure that taonga (treasures) and their stories are treasured expressions of the Maori culture both past and present and that the care of these is important in terms of their ongoing role in the future identity of New Zealand.
National Services Te Paerangi works in partnership with museums, galleries and iwi (tribes) in New Zealand, offering a range of practical and strategic programmes aimed at strengthening the sector.
National Services Te Paerangi is committed to building the skills of everybody volunteering or working in museums and improving opportunities for professional development. Our services and programmes cover all aspects of museum practice, and we provide training at both regional and national levels.
The Development Officer service provides support to museums, art galleries and iwi to help them access the information and services they need, and to provide face-to-face support and advice on a variety of museum issues.
The New Zealand Museums Standards Scheme helps you assess how your museum is currently doing, by reviewing your practices against a set of standards. You can see where you’re doing well, and identify areas you’d like to improve on.
Strategic Project Grants are about thinking strategically and working collaboratively, and have been developed to support projects with long-term outcomes that benefit museums, galleries, iwi groups, their taonga, and their communities.
The Helping Hands Grants programme aims to help small museums carry out their responsibilities. These responsibilities may include:
- purchasing conservation materials
- contracting consultants
- accessing training or professional development opportunities
- Helping Hands grants
The NZMuseums website features nearly 400 New Zealand museums and related culture and heritage organisations. As well as being an online collection management system for small museums it is also a fantastic promotional tool for museums, and features what's on and news sections as well as a blog This can be found at: www.nzmuseums.co.nz
National Services Te Paerangi offers internships to recent graduates of museum studies as part of the Museum Graduate Internship Programme (MGIP). The internships are for up to three months to work on a specific project in a small, professionally staffed museum.
The Expert Knowledge Exchange offers a museum, art gallery, iwi or other cultural organisation the opportunity to host an expert from another organisation. The exchange involves placements for intensive one-on-one advice or workshopping for the organisation and its staff.
The Iwi Exhibition Programme
The Iwi Exhibition Programme gives iwi (tribal groups) the chance to present their taonga (Māori cultural treasures) and stories in a national forum. The taonga may come from iwi collections at Te Papa or other New Zealand museums.
Iwi work collaboratively with Te Papa to design the exhibitions for the iwi gallery. While the exhibitions are on, kaumātua (elders) from the iwi are in residence at the Museum. They carry out ceremonial duties on The Marae among other roles.
The Iwi Exhibition Programme is an important expression of mana taonga – the role of communities in the understanding and care of collections. This concept underpins Te Papa’s guardianship of all taonga.
Recent exhibitions have included:
- Mō Tātou: The Ngāi Tahu Whānui Exhibition – 8 July 2006 to 9 August 2009
- Te Awa Tupua: The Whanganui Iwi – 29 November 2003 to 27 May 2006
- Tūhoe: Children of the Mist – November 2001 to November 2003
- Te Aupouri Iwi: People of Smoke and Flame – August 1999 to October 2001
- Te Ātiawa – February 1998 to August 1999
The Marae offers a unique experience within Te Papa and is also unique within New Zealand. It is Te Papa’s response to the challenge of creating an authentic yet inclusive marae (communal meeting place) for the twenty-first century.
The space comprises a marae atea (place of encounter) and wharenui (meeting house) that cater for all the purposes such places customarily serve. It is also a living exhibition that interprets for visitors the meaning of the marae experience, and acts as a showcase for contemporary Māori art and design.
Like other marae, this Marae is about identity - here, it is our nation's bicultural identity that is addressed. The Marae embodies the spirit of bicultural partnership that lies at the heart of the Museum, and is based on the idea that Te Papa is a forum for the nation. All people have a right to stand on this Marae through a shared whakapapa (genealogy) and the mana (power) of the taonga (treasures) held in Te Papa Tongarewa's collections.
All cultures can feel at home on this marae. Iwi can identify and relate to their ancestors through the striking contemporary carvings. So too can other cultures. Carved ancestral images reflect the occupations and origins of newcomers over the last two hundred years - farmers, educators, clergy, parents, artists - linked with Pākehā, Asian, and Polynesian design references.
The Karanga Aotearoa Repatriation Programme
Te Papa is responsible for returning ancestral remains to their communities of origin through the Karanga Aotearoa Repatriation Programme.
The Karanga Aotearoa Repatriation Programme aims to repatriate kōiwi and kōimi tangata (Māori and Moriori human remains) from overseas institutions to relevant New Zealand iwi (tribal groups). Te Papa carries out this work on behalf of the New Zealand Government, which provides the funding. The programme relies on iwi involvement and support throughout.
Te Papa is undertaking a formal repatriation programme of kōiwi tangata Māori and koimi Moriori (Māori and Moriori ancestral remains) to New Zealand and to hapū/iwi communities of origin. The New Zealand government has agreed to fund Te Papa Tongarewa to undertake this work on its behalf. All queries regarding this programme should be addressed to Te Papa in the first instance.
In February 2001, the Board of Te Papa approved its policy on matters relating to kōiwi/koimi tangata Māori and Moriori. The policy provides a comprehensive framework for the management and care of kōiwi/koimi tangata in the Museum’s guardianship. It provides guidelines for responding to requests to repatriate kōiwi/koimi tangata from overseas institutions and museums. It also provides guidelines for repatriating to hapū and iwi.
Objectives of the Karanga Aotearoa Repatriation Programme include:
- carrying out quality research with appropriate tikanga
- bringing kōiwi/koimi tangata home from overseas institutions and museums
- facilitating their final resting place through engagement with iwi
- maintaining close communication with iwi
- working under the guidance and advice of experts in the form of a Repatriation Advisory Panel
An important objective of the programme is to ensure that iwi have a forum where important issues about repatriation can be discussed and opinions shared. Wānanga and Hui a Rohe are facilitated by Te Papa to gain feedback from iwi so that Te Papa can endeavour to facilitate their requests and provide them with further information.