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Digital Faces showcase NZ innovation

Digital Faces showcase NZ innovation at trans-Tasman Forum

12 May 2004

An innovative “digital faces” display will greet movers and shakers from both sides of the Tasman when they gather at Government House in Wellington for the inaugural Australia-New Zealand Leadership Forum on 14-15 May.

The display consists of two large gilt-framed “paintings” that will be placed opposite each other in the ballroom of Government House.

The “paintings” look like works of art but are in fact large LCD screens showing a parallel sequence of 40 iconic Australian and New Zealand images. Each image changes slowly into the next and after all 40 have been shown, the cycle begins again.

The display was developed specially for the Forum coordinators, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade, by Wellington technology company Click Suite. It is sponsored by Telecom New Zealand.

Click Suite CEO Emily Loughnan says of the screens: ”The idea is that they will look like other works of art on display in Government House, and in doing so will merge into their surroundings. Delegates will probably look at one or both of them and think, ‘that’s a nice picture of….wait a minute it’s changed!’ And then we hope they’ll start looking at the pairs of images and the stories they tell of our two nations.”

The Australia-New Zealand Leadership Forum will bring together some 70 senior Australian and New Zealand figures for two days of talks aimed at strengthening the trans-Tasman relationship.

Participants will include business people, senior politicians – including Deputy Prime Minister Dr Michael Cullen and Foreign Minister Phil Goff – sports stars and cultural icons. Organisers hope the Forum will become an annual event. “The aim of the Forum is, over time, to identify and develop a network of ‘relationship champions’ with visionary ideas and the ability to spell those out to other decision-makers,” said the New Zealand chair of the Forum, BNZ Chairman Kerry McDonald.

Mr McDonald and the Australian chair, Qantas Chair Margaret Jackson will be available for a brief stand-up interview at Government House at 2pm on Friday 14th. The assembled Forum group will be available for a photo opportunity only at 3.45pm Friday.

A media conference involving Forum leaders, including Australian and New Zealand cabinet ministers, will be held at Government House at 1.10pm on Saturday 15 May. So we can arrange security clearance at Government House, please let MFAT know before midday Friday if you would like to attend any or all of the above.

The digital portraits display will be in place at Government House from the afternoon of Thursday 13 May. Photo opportunities can be arranged.


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