Venue: Auckland Museum!

by Phil Wilson

Today we’re delighted to announce that the Maths Craft Festival will be held at the Auckland War Memorial Museum on the weekend of the 3rd and 4th September 2016. Where better to hold a festival celebrating the intersection of maths and crafts, than a Museum with a long history of curation, outreach, and education, and with such vibrant displays of craft and history? Standing on Pukekawa in Auckland Domain, surrounded by parkland, this beautiful neo-classical building couldn’t be more perfect a venue.

The public talks will be held in the auditorium, which can seat 200 people in surprising comfort. Jeanette, Julia, and I were lucky enough to visit the auditorium recently and were struck by how intimate this space feels. Rather than the sometimes austere and intimidating feel of some lecture theatres, this one feels cosy, inviting, and has great acoustics. I’m really looking forward to listening to our great range of speakers in this venue, and to talking about fractals here myself. We have the auditorium booked for the whole weekend, and you can take a 3D virtual tour of it here.

Outside the auditorium is a lobby in which our craft stations will be set up. Here’s where we’ll be learning and honing our skills to crochet hyperbolic planes, create string art, fold beautiful origami, create giant Menger fractals, do mathematical colouring in, and much more. This space, ours for the weekend, will be abuzz with activity as our trained volunteers teach and guide explorations at each station.

In between talks and having fun at the craft stations, there is so much to explore in the Museum. We’re honoured to be sharing the same beautiful building as the War Memorial, and in these centenary years of the First World War we’re delighted that our Maths Craft Festival coincides with the exhibition Home Front - Experiences of the First World War in New Zealand. The exhibition focusses on life at home during wartime, a part of which was the necessity of craft to support the war effort and the home in difficult times.

Also on at the same time as Maths Craft is the exhibition Kōrero Mai, Kōrero Atu, featuring beautifully crafted objects by acclaimed artists Areta Wilkinson and Te Rongo Kirkwood, who showcase their artwork alongside historical objects from the Museum’s collections. As well as checking out the exhibition when you come to Maths Craft, if you’re in Auckland on a Thursday then pop in to the Kōrero Mai, Kōrero Atu exhibition space for demonstrations of traditional weaving by master weavers and special presentations from Museum curators.

There’s so much on! We’re really excited to be holding this event in such a fantastic, welcoming, beautiful, and historical space. Come along for a public talk or to try your hand at a craft station, look around the Museum, and stay for as much of the weekend festival as you can. We can’t wait to see you all there.