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New Zealand Doodle 4 Google top 20 announced

New Zealand Doodle 4 Google top 20 announced

Auckland, 19 October 2009 – Google has revealed the Kiwi school students whose Google ‘doodles’ have made the top 20 in New Zealand’s first ever Doodle 4 Google competition, proudly supported by the Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa.

Google called for entries from every primary, intermediate and secondary school in New Zealand, challenging students from Years 1 through 10 to design a Google ‘doodle’ inspired by the theme “My New Zealand”. The winning doodle will appear on the Google.co.nz homepage for one day in 2010, to be viewed by millions of users.

Google’s Annie Baxter says, “Thousands of entries were received from more than 600 schools across New Zealand. One hundred finalists were selected on the basis of artistic merit, creativity, and how well the theme of 'My New Zealand' was communicated.

“We then invited our judges, Te Papa’s Curator of Contemporary Art Charlotte Huddleston, Huffer founder Steve Dunstan and Erin Simpson, host of TV2’s The Erin Simpson Show, to come together at Te Papa’s amazing multimedia room Our Space to select the top 20. We’re enormously impressed at the calibre of the final 20 entries and can’t wait to see what New Zealand thinks now that we’re open for public voting.”

The top 20 entries can be viewed at www.google.co.nz/doodle4google/ where the public can vote for their favourite to find the four age group winners. Visitors to Te Papa can also view the top 20 doodles in Our Space as well as on the giant Our Space TelstraClear Screen on the outside of the complex next to Te Papa’s main entrance.

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All students in the top 20 will be flown to the grand final event, to be held in Wellington on 5 November, where Dennis Hwang, Google’s original Doodler, will select the overall winner whose design will appear at www.google.co.nz.

Details of all top 20 follow at the end of this release.

What the judges thought
Steve Dunstan, Huffer: “Judging the doodles has been an awesome process – it’s been great to get an understanding of what influences the next generation of Kiwis, and it’s certainly something I’ll be taking back to our design room. What came through loud and clear for me in the doodles is a patriotic pride and love for our clean and green lifestyle, from recycling and nuclear-free symbols through to native forests and grassy landscapes. It’s really encouraging for the future.”

Charlotte Huddleston, Te Papa: “All of our finalists were really imaginative, working in all of the things that meant ‘New Zealand’ to them – like replacing the Google letters with everything from kiwifruit to wetas, hokey-pokey ice cream, All Blacks and sheep. I was genuinely impressed by the subtlety and creativity of the designs.”

Erin Simpson, The Erin Simpson Show: “It’s awesome to see that no matter how much our society changes or how fast technology advances, some things never change – it’s cool to see young New Zealanders still enjoying those little things that make us Kiwis, like sand, sun, surf and tomato sauce!”

What are Google doodles?
The customisation of the Google logo first took place in 1999, and Dennis Hwang and the Google doodle team have since celebrated events, anniversaries and holidays worldwide with doodles that incorporate the Google logo – including ANZAC Day and the anniversary of Sir Edmund Hillary's historical ascent of Mt Everest.

To vote or for more information, please visit: www.google.co.nz/doodle4google. You can also view the doodles at www.tepapa.govt.nz.


2009 Doodle 4 Google New Zealand finalists
• Amelia Abbott, Hampden Street School, Nelson (Years 1-3)
• Umut Baro, Summerland Primary, Henderson, Auckland (Years 1-3)
• Thomas Wellington, Churton Park School, Wellington (Years 1-3)
• Harrison Dykes, Heddon Bush School, Southland (Years 1-3)
• Abigail Sadlier, Awapuni School, Palmerston North (Years 4-6)
• Zachary Helm, Balmoral School, Auckland (Years 4-6)
• Atalya Fakavamoeanga, Coastal Taranaki School, Okato, Taranaki (Years 4-6)
• Samantha Waters, Whenuapai School, Whenuapai (Years 4-6)
• Meg Robinson, St Thomas's School, Kohimarama, Auckland (Years 7-8)
• Havannah Pearson, Pukekohe Intermediate, Pukekohe (Years 7-8)
• Harry Hartley, Paraparaumu Beach School, Paraparaumu (Years 7-8)
• Andrei Golovko, Kirkwood Intermediate, Christchurch (Years 7-8)
• Sophie Arnold, Fairfield Intermediate School, Hamilton (Years 7-8)
• Jordan Earl, Heretaunga Intermediate, Hawkes Bay (Years 7-8)
• Olivier Bartolomei, Cashmere High School, Christchurch (Years 9-10)
• Ashley Brown, James Hargest College, Invercargill (Years 9-10)
• Emily Fountain, Epsom Girls Grammar, Auckland (Years 9-10)
• Tanisha Dyer, Motueka High School, Motueka (Years 9-10)
• Molly Ploeg, Immanuel Christian School, Auckland (Years 9-10)
• Emily Chin, Onslow College, Wellington (Years 9-10)

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