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Whakaaturanga Rangitahi

Temporary Exhibitions

'Three tractors ago...'

Opens 3rd September 2022

‘Three tractors ago…’ is an exhibition highlighting some of the major building and maintenance works undertaken at Waitangi Treaty Grounds since 1934. The exhibition features 54 photos from the undigitised photography collection that have not been shown before, as well as a watercolour painting from Waitangi’s Heritage Collection.

From replanting native trees through to craning Kupe off the roof of Te Whare Rūnanga, ‘Three tractors ago…’ takes the visitor on a journey through the unseen work of behind-the-scenes staff and contractors. Read first-hand accounts about learning how to thatch, what was involved in lifting the roof off the waka shelter, and the best place to source toetoe in Northland. See perspectives not often available to the public, and view historic photographs through the people that have made up the fabric of Waitangi Treaty Grounds.

The name ‘Three tractors ago…’ is credited to Barry Keyzer, who on seeing a photograph included in the exhibition exclaimed ‘I remember when that happened, that was three tractors ago.’

Image credit:
Header: Kupe being returned to Te Whare Rūnanga in 1993 (WNTPH270/1-19)
Right Copy: Painting tukutuku on the porch of Te Whare Rūnanga, 1989 (WNTPH253/4-4)

Maori art at Waitangi Treaty Grounds