Ex­hibit marks 50th birth­day

Kapi-Mana News - - NEWS - By KRIS DANDO

For Alice Masters, the end of the road has been reached with a mix­ture of re­lief and pride.

Pataka’s so­cial his­tory cu­ra­tor has spent about nine months or­gan­is­ing We Built This City, an ex­hi­bi­tion cel­e­brat­ing how far Porirua has come in 50 years.

She said it had been a team ef­fort, with a lot of coun­cil sup­port and re­search of­fered, along with con­tri­bu­tions from peo­ple and groups in the Porirua com­mu­nity. The amount of in­for­ma­tion did get a bit over­whelm­ing, she said.

‘‘You get to a point where you have to say ‘ stop now’. You can’t get it all in,’’ she said. ‘‘But I think we’ve struck the right bal­ance and I’m re­ally ex­cited and proud to see it now.’’

Fea­tures of the ex­hi­bi­tion, which has a real retro feel to it, in­clude the use of boxes to il­lus­trate the build­ing as­pect of the city, a strik­ing city map made by Plim­mer­ton firm DAC Group and a 1960s’ state house kitchen.

It is in­ter­ac­tive, with tele­phones at dif­fer­ent points to lis­ten to au­dio – such as Prince Charles’ speech when he opened the po­lice col­lege – and tele­vi­sions show­ing clips of in­ter­est.

Mayor Nick Leggett’s Gi­ga­town rap video adds a mod­ern feel to pro­ceed­ings.

Quirky ad­di­tions in­clude the Hunter Grant Shield from the Plim­mer­ton Boat­ing Club, awarded for the most cap­sizes in a year. Porirua in­sti­tu­tions like the Wind­mill Qual­ity Cake Shop and Todd Mo­tors fea­ture.

The ex­hi­bi­tion is laid out in re­la­tion to Porirua’s sub­urbs, with Ti­tahi Bay to the west, Pukerua Bay in the north and Can­nons Creek to the east, for ex­am­ple.

‘‘It was im­por­tant to have that his­tor­i­cal as­pect, but some­thing like this needs to be en­gag­ing, which I think we’ve achieved,’’ Masters said. ‘‘At the end of the day, maps and build­ings and roads have been im­por­tant to Porirua’s growth, and we’ve shown that off in a fun way.’’

Peo­ple who come into the exhi- bi­tion will also be able to leave their thoughts of Porirua on Pos­tit notes on one of the boxes.

Masters hopes that some of the dis­play will form part of a per­ma­nent his­tor­i­cal sec­tion at Pataka.

The ex­hi­bi­tion runs un­til Septem­ber 20.

Photo: KRIS DANDO

Alice Masters with the Porirua map at the en­trance to the We Built This City ex­hi­bi­tion.

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