Museums join forces to celebrate creativity

The Museum of Samoa and the Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Togarewa are joining hands for the first time to share an exhibition, featuring a Samoan born New Zealand artist, Joseph Churchward, who passed in May 2013.

The exhibition pays tribute to his remarkable contribution to the arts. 

Church-ward dedicated his life to letters. 

‘Hand-lettering is superior,’ his business cards proclaimed, a reflection of his belief that the subtlety of a curve could only be captured by hand.

Over six decades, Church-ward created more than 600 typefaces – each one representing several hundred hours of work. International recognition came after the leading German company Berthold Fototype acquired a number of his fonts in the late 1960s. His playful, idiosyncratic typefaces – produced, in later years, from his Wellington home – are used around the world.

Endlessly creative, Church-ward found inspiration in his family and Samoan heritage. He remained enraptured by the possibilities of the alphabet: ‘Without letters ... we wouldn’t be able to communicate.’ Sean Mallon, senior Pacific curator of the donor museum has said that it is with great pleasure that they give this work to the people of Samoa.

Safua Akeli, the curator of the said exhibition is currently the Manager of the Postgraduate Development Studies in the National University of Samoa, and will voice more on the occasion of its launching. 

The Chief Executive Officer of the Ministry of Education Sports and Culture, Dr. Karoline Afamasaga Fuata’i will officially open the exhibition for the public in a ceremony at the Museum of Samoa, on the 26th Of February 2016.

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