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LIANZA 2023 Conference: Day Three Highlights


People gazing upon artworks in the storage room

LIANZA has been a conference for great insights about information and how it is managed. To read more about LIANZA, check out Aleisha Amohia’s highlights for day one and day two of the conference.

Aleisha is the Technical Lead for Rōpū kohinga at Catalyst IT, and is excited to be in Christchurch for the three-day event. This blog is about some of her highlights from day three.

LIANZA 2023 day three insights

Tales and tours

This was Aleisha’s first time visiting Ōtautahi Christchurch, so she was excited to see the sites. The LIANZA 2023 Conference team organised a range of tours around the city. Aleisha signed up for a walking tour that visited:

  • Tūranga Christchurch Central Library.
  • NZ Law Society Library and Justice Precinct.
  • Te Pūkenga Ara Institute of Technology.
  • Robert and Barbara Stewart Library.
  • Archives at Christchurch Art Gallery.
A wall of books and art on the Children’s floor at Tūranga

Tūranga is a beautifully designed library. The children’s floor (level 1) has something for everyone. Including video games, lego, board games, and jigsaw puzzles. The space is well considered with warm decor, comfortable seating, colourful lights, and easy-to-reach shelving with stacks of titles. Aleisha’s favourite area is the Ngā Pounamu Māori collection on level 2. Although she’d quite happily spend all day in any corner of Tūranga. Especially in the professional recording studio, or playing with the laser cutter!

Public libraries are very different from special libraries. It was interesting to learn about the collections at the NZ Law Society Library and the Justice Precinct. These collections are only accessed by law professionals and judges, and the librarians are conducting research. They figure out how best to pull together information from legal proceedings and policy documents from around the country.

Aleisha and friends testing the one-button recording studio

Ara Institute of Canterbury’s library catered wonderfully to the needs of its learners. It has a 24/7 computer hub, a one-button video recording room, and plenty of group and solo study space. The group spent half the time touring the library, and the other half on an art tour around campus.

The final stop was the Christchurch Art Gallery, where the group received a behind-the-scenes tour of the gallery. It was fascinating to visit the workshop for the art. This is where a team endlessly build custom crates to house the pieces when they are shipped between galleries and shows. As well as learning about the special considerations they must make to ensure the art is protected while travelling. The group then got a sneak peek in the storage room of some pieces that might be in an upcoming show. It felt to the group like they were being let in on a secret. Particularly when he showed the famous Cass painting by Rita Angus, which was unusually not in the main gallery!

Gazing upon artworks in the storage room

The library holds all kinds of items that are related to creators or pieces held by the gallery. There are books specifically about:

  • A series.
  • Autobiographies about painters.
  • Fictional books with a painting on the cover that the gallery has in storage.

Finally, the group visited the conservation lab, where the team works to keep the pieces in perfect condition for travel or display. It was enthralling to hear about the challenges they face with different media and materials. As well as the lessons they’ve learned as art has evolved, including digital conservation.

LIANZA 2023: Final wrap-up

Aleisha was grateful for the opportunity to travel to Ōtautahi Christchurch and network with librarians and information professionals. It was a great way of connecting their communities to knowledge in a multitude of ways. While the dream is for every library in Aotearoa to adopt the Koha Library Management System, it was great to speak at LIANZA. Aleisha and Chris enjoyed presenting open source library solutions. And hearing how people are creating and innovating in their libraries. Until next time!

Rōpū kohinga are represented at LIANZA to hear about what is important in your organisations so we can better support you with your collections – whether it is a repository, archive, or library.

Chat with our team if you need support to care for your collections through technology.

What is LIANZA?

Te Rau Herenga o Aotearoa, Library and Information Association of New Zealand Aotearoa Conference is one of the largest gatherings for librarians and information professionals in New Zealand. For the first time since 2019, it was kanohi ki te kanohi (face to face).

Keep up to date with the latest in LIANZA by heading to their website.