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Accolades at 2016 New Zealand Museum Awards

Otago Museum claimed several top honours, including two categories and a special award, in this year’s ServiceIQ New Zealand Museum Awards held in Auckland on Wednesday 18 May.

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Our new Beautiful Science Gallery, which allows visitors to explore the seasons, landscapes and skies of Otago using world-leading digital technology, was awarded the Metropolitan Science and Technology Award, while the recently closed Hākui: Women of Kāi Tahu exhibition took home the Metropolitan Taonga Māori Award and the Perpetual Guardian Planetarium won the Philips Selecon special award.

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The judging panel for the awards included University of Auckland’s Dr Michelle Dickinson, New Zealand Portrait Gallery acting director Helen Kedgley, Tauranga City Council’s Cultural Heritage Manager Dean Flavell and Dr Bronwyn Labrum, Head of New Zealand and Pacific Cultures at Te Papa.

Otago Museum Director Dr Ian Griffin was thrilled with the Museum’s success at the awards. “I am delighted that we have come away with some of the top awards of the night,” says Griffin. “To be recognised and congratulated by those within our industry is humbling and is reflective of the hard work and dedication put in by the team in delivering these projects. I couldn’t be more pleased for everyone involved. This really does go to show that we are offering our loyal visitors some of the best museum experiences in New Zealand."

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Graham Crombie, Otago Museum Trust Board Chairman, was equally pleased by the award announcements. “The Otago Museum Trust Board would like to congratulate the staff involved in bringing each of these award-winning projects to life,” says Crombie. “It is extremely rewarding to see these initiatives, which allow our visitors to engage with science, nature and culture in new ways, succeed on a national stage.”

The awards were announced during the inaugural Museums Australasia Conference, held in Auckland from 15 to 19 May.