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Curator’s Talk: Tiny Statements: Badges at Te Papa

Wednesday 12 July, 11:00 am - 12:30 pm

$25.00 – $30.00

Te Papa curators and award-winning authors Stephanie Gibson and Claire Regnault have recently written Tiny Statements: A social history of Aotearoa New Zealand in badges, published by Te Papa Press in April 2023.

Badges are tiny objects with big stories: evidence that pride, identity and outrage can be wrapped up in small dimensions and worn like mini billboards. Throughout New Zealand’s history, people have used badges to join, belong, resist, defy and celebrate a myriad of causes and organisations. From protest groups and Girl Guides to sports clubs, animal breeds, tino rangatiratanga and suffrage – there has been a badge for almost every New Zealand cause and endeavour.

Claire and Stephanie will present a selection of striking badges from Te Papa’s collections and the rich stories they open up about Aotearoa: how people spent their free time, their pride in belonging, the causes they fought for, the influences of local and global events and movements. Some will inspire a wealth of memories – ‘I was there’, ‘I fought for that’, ‘I achieved this’, ‘I belonged’.

We will also be joined by Trevor Dick, who worked in Petone, Wellington, from the early 1950s to the early 1980s. Throughout his career, Trevor kept an example of each badge he made, resulting in a substantial collection which provides an insight into the wide range of interests, both personal and professional, that brought people together. Many of these tiny works of art will be celebrated in the presentation.

Copies of the book and poster will be available for purchase and signing.  Tea and coffee will be provided with light refreshments, along with free parking validation with your ticket.

Image credit above: Detail from the Tiny Statements poster, Te Papa Press.


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Wednesday 12 July
11:00 am - 12:30 pm
$25.00 – $30.00
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Te Huinga Centre, Level 3, Te Papa
55 Cable Street, Wellington
Wellington, 6011 New Zealand
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Friends of Te Papa
(04) 381 7051