9 Jan 2024

Historical New Zealand photos nearly sent to US landfill

From Morning Report, 8:41 am on 9 January 2024

Dame Whina Cooper's daughter is pleased thousands of photos of Māori life from the early 20th century have been brought back into New Zealand, but is unhappy they ended up overseas and nearly sent to landfill.

The photos were sent overseas for digitisation, but the company that held them went bust.

The Duncan Miller Gallery in Los Angeles - which specialises in twentieth and twenty-first century photos - saved the images and has been working to restore and return them to New Zealand.

Hinerangi Cooper-Puru told RNZ it is abysmal that the historically significant images ever left New Zealand without permission from iwi or whanau.

Daniel Miller, the man in charge of returning the photos, spoke to Charlotte Cook from Los Angeles.