On Valentines Day 1998, The Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa opened on the Wellington waterfront.
Prime Minister Jim Bolger, who pushed it through despite Treasury and cabinet opposition, later said "We needed a museum that captured who we were as a people, as a nation, as a country". Twenty years on, Noelle McCarthy rummages through the collection to find 20 objects that speak to that sense of nationhood Bolger was so keen to put on display.
Over the next 20 weeks McCarthy will unveil 20 taonga from high art to pop culture, from the natural world to the frontline of politics. She will talk to a New Zealander who has a special connection with the object and the Te Papa expert who can explain what it's all about.
Each new episode will be released online and on your podcast app every Tuesday morning and will air on Jesse Mulligan 1-4pm each Tuesday afternoon. Have a listen and see what each item says to you about the life and times of Aotearoa New Zealand.