Prime Minister to speak at Katherine Mansfield fundraiser
March 5, 2019
Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern will talk all things literature in a fundraising event on March 13 for Katherine Mansfield House and Garden re-developments.
Museum director Tamara Pattern said the event was expected to sell out, with people responding well to Ardern’s attendance.
“It’s fantastic we can get a prime minister to support us like this. It’s a great fundraiser heading into the redevelopment work,” Pattern said.
Students from Wellington high schools will be attending for free maintaining the museum’s focus on education.
Funds raised, supplemented by a grant from the Lottery Environment Heritage Committee, will be used for building renovations. Insulation and heating will be installed in an effort to ensure the future of the category one historic place.
A “gentle” re-furbishing would take place inside, replacing carpet that had seen 30 years of foot-traffic, said Pattern.
Museum staff will be re-developing the exhibitions while the renovations happen.
One catalyst for the updates was the way curatorial practices had changed in the 30 years since the museum opened in 1988, Pattern said.
She and her team would focus primarily on the personal history of Mansfield becoming one of New Zealand’s most celebrated authors, which drew the most intrigue from visitors.
They would also present the lifetime of the house in-depth, to ensure the experience was not purely “surface level.” “I feel the weight of responsibility to do it well,” said Pattern. “But it’s very exciting.”
With the museum set to re-open at the end of July, Pattern hoped the re-developments would broaden the museum’s audience, and increase visitor numbers.
“Most importantly, however, is people having a great experience when they come here,” she emphasised.
- Tickets for the fundraiser to support the re-development of the Katherine Mansfield House and Garden museum are $55 and can be purchased online, in person, or by phoning (04) 473 7268.