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Call Out For 100 Covid-19 Objects From Tāmaki Makaurau

Auckland Museum is calling out for Covid-19 objects from the public to help tell the story of this pandemic and lockdown for future generations.

The Museum’s Curator of History Lucy Mackintosh and Curator of Manuscripts Nina Finigan say one of Auckland Museum’s roles is to look at what is happening in the present day in order to tell the story in years to come.

“The Covid-19 pandemic has changed lives and will be a defining moment of our time. We’re looking for objects, material and photos to tell this story.”

The Museum wants to document how daily life has changed at home during lockdown; what measures businesses have taken to adapt to these new circumstances; how Auckland’s streets and neighbourhoods have changed; the ways people have connected and continued to create during the pandemic; and protective measures taken over this time.

“We want to collect objects such as photographs, arts and crafts, posters and signs, journals or diaries as well as things that defined this time such as masks, gloves, hand sanitiser and scrubs.”

They both say the Museum is already working with some neighbourhoods, businesses, communities and health facilities, but want more personal reflections.

“We are on the lookout for additional things that are particularly personal and resonant, or that give different perspectives on the pandemic in Auckland and surrounding areas. Street signs, creative projects and emotional responses to the pandemic are some of things we are hoping to add to the collection.”

A curator’s role is to think about that future and make a judgement call about what kinds of material, objects and stories will best reflect this event, and Auckland Museum is a collection institution.

“We collect social and cultural history, the history of war and conflict, as well as evidence from the natural environment. While many may think of our museum collecting exclusively “historic material”, the reality is that history is being created every day and we are all a part of this unfolding human story. Moments like the one we are living through bring this idea into sharpened focus,” Nina says.

To submit items for consideration please complete and submit our Object Offer form to along with any relevant photographs and any information on the item's use and its significance.

See here for further detail about the donation process.

Please note that for a variety of reasons Auckland Museum cannot accept all proposed donations.

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