Tuesday, 30 June 2015

1988 Rafter Paintings - Kowhaiwhai

 For an index to all our posts on The Maori People.
        Kowhaiwhai is an art form of the New Zealand Maori, found on the interior rafters of tribal meeting houses.  The rafters are seen as the ribs of the ancestor, whom the house personifies.  All the carving, weaving and artwork embellishing a meeting house relate the legends, history and beliefs of the tribe.
         Three colours dominated traditional designs - red ochre from crushed stone, black from soot, and white-blue grey from clay.  These pigments were mixed with shark oil to produce the paint.  Simple fibre brushes were used.  The Maori people believe their designs symbolise strength, new life, growth in knowledge and the breath of life.
         For a more contemporary view of Kowhaiwhai view our post 2015 Matariki - Kowhaiwhai.
         Four variations of traditional patterns were designed specially for this set of stamps.

Monday, 29 June 2015

1972 - 1973 Scenic Stamps.

1972 Scenic Stamps - Lakes.
See the full collection Scenic Stamps Series - Part One.
The first issue of what was to become the annual Scenic Stamp Issue appeared in 1972. This was a four value set depicting Scenic Lakes. 

Wednesday, 24 June 2015

1974 - New Zealand Day

          The Treaty of Waitangi was the climax of a long series of events which finally led the then British Government to establish the sovereignty of the Crown over the islands of New Zealand.  When Captain William Hobson arrived at the Bay of Islands as Lieutenant Governor, the northern chiefs were summoned to Waitangi for the purpose of negotiating a treaty.  After much explanation and discussion, forty-five chiefs signed the Treaty by drawing their moko, the tattooed design on each face, upon the parchment on 6 February 1840.

         In 1932, Governor-General Lord Bledisloe and his wife purchased and presented to the nation the run-down house of James Busby, where the treaty was signed. The Treaty house and grounds were made a public reserve, which was dedicated on 6 February 1934. This event is considered by some to be the first Waitangi Day, although celebrations were not yet held annually. It would not be until the 1940s that any real attempt was made to celebrate it, but even then, it was not considered a holiday. 
         In 1971 the Labour shadow minister of Māori Affairs, Matiu Rata, introduced a private member's bill to make Waitangi Day a national holiday, to be called New Zealand Day. This was unsuccessful and did not pass into law. After the 1972 election of the third Labour government under Norman Kirk, it was announced that from 1974 Waitangi Day would become a national holiday, known as New Zealand Day. The New Zealand Day Act 1973 was passed in 1973.
         For Norman Kirk, the change was simply an acceptance that New Zealand was ready to move forward towards a broader concept of nationhood. Diplomatic posts had for some years marked this day, and so it seemed timely in view of the country's increasing role on the international stage that the national day becomes known as New Zealand Day. At the 1974 celebrations, the Flag of New Zealand was flown for the first time at the top of the flagstaff at Waitangi, rather than the Union Flag, and a replica of the flag of the United Tribes of New Zealand was also flown.
          The election of the third National government in 1975 led to New Zealand Day being renamed Waitangi Day, because, the new Prime Minister, Rob Muldoon, did not like the name "New Zealand Day" and many Māori felt the new name debased the importance of the Treaty of Waitangi. Another Waitangi Day Act was passed in 1976 to change the name of the day back to Waitangi Day.

For an index to all our posts concerning The Maori People.

Tuesday, 23 June 2015

1988 - Centenary of Electricity

         New Zealand's beginning as a nation was marked by the signing of the Treaty of Waitangi in 1840. A little more than 25 years later, the first hydro-electric power was being generated by crude installations in the goldfields of the South Island.
         In 1888, one of these gold mining centres, now the town of Reefton, became the first community in the Southern Hemisphere to switch on to municipal hydro-electric power.  This was only six years behind similar developments in the United States of America.
        After Reefton, other pockets of private and commercial electricity generation were established throughout the country.  In 1904, a detailed survey of New Zealand's power potential described the country as "the powerhouse of the Orient".

Sunday, 21 June 2015

2015 Matariki - Kowhaiwhai

         Typically featured in the whare whakairo (decorated meeting house) on the heke (rafters), kōwhaiwhai is an art form that is distinctively Māori, and unique to Aotearoa New Zealand. Issued to coincide with the dawn of Māori New Year, the Matariki 2015 stamp issue celebrates this ancient art form in a more contemporary setting.
        In this post I have shown the full set below so you an get an over-view of the designs. Further down we will feature each of the six stamps with more detailed notes on each artist. (Current images will be replaced when better ones become available.) Next there is an area of other items of interest, including the usual Miniature Sheet and First Day Covers. At the bottom just above the Technical Information is a 1988 issue that also featured Kowhaiwhai. 

Monday, 15 June 2015

2015 Kiwi Kitchen.

          Brought to life by New Zealand artist Jason Kelly, this kitschy stamp issue combines well known Kiwi dishes with Kelly’s signature humour. Each stamp was originally painted on a wooden panel, and together they make a unique sheet of 18 stamps. The stamps were only available on this special sheet or on a set of three First Day Covers.

          As it is with many countries around the world, the pride of many Kiwi homes is the kitchen, and the easiest way to a Kiwi’s heart is through their stomach. New Zealand is home to loads of weird and wonderful recipes that combine simple, but flavoursome ingredients to create home and party staples that can only be described as quintessentially Kiwi.

          Who would’ve thought that an afternoon tea favourite would be asparagus wrapped in buttered bread? Or that kids’ parties would be incomplete without fairy bread? Every good Southlander is practically raised on Southland cheese rolls, and we all know that the pavlova is definitely a Kiwi invention (just don’t ask any Aussies in the room for fear of restarting the ‘Great Pavlova Debate’).

          Whether they’re from the iconic Edmonds Cookery Book or passed down through families there’s bound to be a dish on this quirky stamp sheet that every Kiwi can relate to.

Sunday, 14 June 2015

2012 - A Tiki Tour of New Zealand No 2

         The Second Tiki Tour of New Zealand showed a lot more colour than the original Tiki Tour in 2009. (2009 - A Tiki Tour of New Zealand) 

         It was a similar format featuring various places around New Zealand in stylised/cartoon type illustrations on a map of New Zealand. Some of the places and scenes had been seen in the first series, but here many were completely new. 

         We have laid out this post with a brief summary of the series taken from the NZ Post web siteThen we show the actual sheet as it was issued. Below this you will find a set of three First Day Covers. Finally we have laid out all 20 stamps separately with some information about places shown.

Thursday, 11 June 2015

1959 Anniversaries.

       The 1959 Anniversaries are actually three separate issues that appeared during the first part of the year. We have decided to combine them into one post including the issue date under the title of each issue.

       First is the 1959 Boy Scouts Pan-Pacific Jamboree, a one stamp issue marking the large jamboree held in Auckland. The second issue is a three stamp set celebrating the Marlborough Centennial. Finally we have another one stamp issue marking 100 years from the idea for the establishing of the Red Cross.

       We have also included covers and First Day Covers, printing and perforation flaws as well.