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Te Papa Opens $6 Million Multimedia Experience

12 September 2008


Te Papa Opens $6 Million Multimedia Experience On 27 September


Our Space, Te Papa’s spectacular new multimedia adventure, opens on 27 September, proudly supported by TelstraClear and TVNZ. The interactive experience, featuring the latest in participatory technology, took more than four years to develop, cost $6 million and will be the icing on Te Papa’s 10th birthday cake.

Our Space replaces the TimeWarp experience on Level 2, one of the main attractions in the museum for the past ten years. Criticised by museum commentators for its flashing lights and fun park rides, the TimeWarp boldly symbolised a break away from traditional museology and embraced technology in innovative ways to tell of the stories of this nation. Over 4.5 million visitors visited the TimeWarp − New Zealanders, international visitors and audiences not often seen in museums before.

‘Our Space continues along that innovative path, and engages visitors in ways a New Zealand museum has never done before − the public contributes the content via the website,, and controls the outcomes in a truly unique and interactive experience,’ said Dr Seddon Bennington, Te Papa’s Chief Executive.

To date, over 7500 video clips, photos and artworks have been contributed to Our Space by TVNZ, Te Papa, regional museums, keen New Zealanders and even international holidaymakers. That number will continue to grow. The only criteria are that the images, photographs or clips tell local and regional stories, promote our identities and show our experiences of life in New Zealand.

Visitors are drawn into Our Space by a 14 metre long luminous satellite map of New Zealand. Hidden sensored tiles in The Map trigger waves of images on the media walls, particular to the region the visitor is standing on, creating an intriguing, dynamic montage of our country. The more people on The Map, the more images appear, including archival news footage supplied by TVNZ. Visitors can also create e-postcards of themselves at their favourite places in New Zealand that will float on screens at the end of The Map.

Then there is The Wall. Measuring 18 metres long and 2 metres high, it is a massive canvas onto which visitors can create their own expressions of New Zealand, using media selected from the thousands of images and sound in the database. Visitors choose the media via 12 computer touchscreens, and then project them onto the media wall. The images can be stretched, animated, painted and moved, using wand-like remote controls. They can even be downloaded to USB sticks or burnt onto CDs, so visitors can take their creations away with them.

The first of the two new motion simulator rides is the rollercoaster adventure of the High Ride. Journeying inside The Wall, it takes you on an exhilarating ride through New Zealand: re-live the joy of sliding down a grassy hill and bouncing on a trampoline; the wonder of swimming with dolphins, and the rush of a rugby scrum. Race a motorbike along a deserted beach, and career down a busy track on a mountain bike; go back in time with aviator Richard Pearse, and find yourself on the front line in the Land Wars. The High Ride is an adrenalin-filled ride for all the family!

Around 80 per cent of New Zealand is underwater and The Deep Ride takes you to the Brothers volcano on the Kermadec Arc, northeast of New Zealand – more people have been to the moon than down to these amazing underwater volcanos! With renowned scientist and adventurer Dr Cornel de Ronde to guide you, join the hunt for deep-sea black smokers and erupting volcanoes from the safety of our deep-sea vehicle simulator. The Deep Ride uses real footage selected from many hours of oceanic dives undertaken by GNS Science, the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), and the Japan Agency for Marine-Earth Science and Technology (JAMSTEC).

Te Papa’s leading telecommunications provider, TelstraClear, is proud to support Our Space’s exciting new technology.

TelstraClear Chief Executive Dr Allan Freeth says Our Space provides an opportunity for all New Zealanders to contribute and interact using high speed communications.

‘We provide the underlying networks that people use at work and at home every day. With Our Space we’re able to help deliver a unique way of experiencing technology so that New Zealanders of all ages can celebrate who they are and where they have come from.’

‘TelstraClear is in the business of connecting people and the technology we provide will enable New Zealanders to share their stories.’

Te Papa’s cultural partner, TVNZ, has opened its archive and contributed a stunning selection of footage, including iconic major events in New Zealand’s history, as well as lesser-known clips which present everyday life, past and present.

TVNZ CEO Rick Ellis said Our Space was a stunning project that helped New Zealanders celebrate being Kiwis.

‘Much of post-World War II New Zealand history is recorded and preserved in TVNZ’s archives, and Our Space is a good opportunity to share it with the country. As New Zealand’s public broadcaster, TVNZ is pleased to have a partnership with another of the country’s cultural institutions, Te Papa.

Every day, TVNZ’s channels educate, inform and entertain New Zealanders with stories about themselves. This is a critical task in helping to develop our national identity. In the digitised world we are now in, where content can be moved, manipulated and shared, Our Space creates even more opportunities.’

Our Space
Opens 27 September 2008 (long term exhibition)
Level 2, Te Papa
Admission charges apply for rides


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