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Disjunctive Archives


Mon 10 Nov 2014, 6:00pm–8:30pm

Where: AUT Auckland - Sir Paul Reeves Building, 2 Governor Fitzroy Place, CBD, Auckland

Restrictions: All Ages

Ticket Information:

  • Admission: Free


A free screening at AUT City Campus, Sir Paul Reeves Building, room WG126, Level 1.

Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision, AUT and Colab invite you to join us for a unique programme of films exploring built environments, dwelling and urban development as constructs of national identity. The design of the houses, buildings and cars featured in these films is impacted by social forces ranging from environmentalism, to the American Dream, to anti-Nazism.

The evening's programme presents a chronology of films, commencing with a short 1941 government film made during World War II, "Things We are Fighting For: Homes for the Free," concerning state investment in housing construction with montage edits of Hitler’s Germany. It concludes with a 1976 film made by the Timber Industry, "New Zealand Pole Houses," on environmental housing, followed by a coda from the "Koha" series, a 1980s segment on identity and dwelling. At mid-point is an excerpt from a 1958 American film on designing the American Dream, made by Chevrolet, at that time a division of the American automotive manufacturer, General Motors.

The films show in stark relief quite fundamental shifting attitudes to urban development, as the discourses transform from those extolling the unquestioned virtues of rapid industrialization and urbanization in New Zealand’s post-war economic expansion, to an emerging critical discourse from the 1970s around environmental agency and ecology. At the mid-point is the American promotional document extolling the American Dream. One could be forgiven when viewing this film for believing that the United States of America in 1958 had no Afro-Americans, no Hispanic people, no working class, no poverty or hardship. But, as we all know, this dream sold itself internationally.

Programme curated by by Dr. Mark Jackson.

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