AWMM’s Scala Arts Director’s Choice
Director’s Choice: Auckland Museum, Auckland Museum, February 2021
Auckland Museum‘s Chief Executive, Dr David Gaimster, explores the museum’s extraordinary collection, each item with its own compelling backstory, in this volume—part of Scala’s international Director’s Choice series.
Auckland Museum houses the world’s leading collection of Māori taonga and, reflecting Auckland’s place as the world’s largest Polynesian city, multiple traditional and contemporary arts from throughout the Pacific region. The Museum’s natural history and documentary heritage holdings are among the most extensive in the southern hemisphere. New photography showcases some of the key items in the collection in exquisite detail.
I was struck by the way a selection of around fifty things has been turned into a guide to the collection, a history of New Zealand, a reflection on different kinds of migration and the impact of migrants on the world they move to — and indeed a vindication not just of collection, but of the study of history. It is a remarkable achievement.
– Neil MacGregor, former Director National Gallery & British Museum
Dr David Gaimster joined the Auckland Museum as Director in 2017, having previously directed The Hunterian, University of Glasgow, and the Society of Antiquaries of London and worked in senior roles at the UK Department for Culture, Media and Sport and at the British Museum. He has published extensively on archaeology, museology, and cultural property.