Te Papa museum's DreamWorks and Gallipoli exhibitions draw crowds video

JOHN NICHOLSON/Stuff.co.nz

Gallipoli: The Scale of our War is being credited with bringing in big numbers to Te Papa

Te Papa has had its biggest month since last millennium, thanks to public appetite for WWI and animation.

In January, 221,377 people strolled through the museum's doors, the busiest January ever and third highest number of visitors in a since it opened.

When it first opened Te Papa had an influx of people keen to see the new museum, with 234,573 visitors in March 1998, and 250,803 the following month.  

Crowds gather outside Te Papa's Gallipoli: The Scale of our War exhibition.
MAARTEN HOLL/FAIRFAX

Crowds gather outside Te Papa's Gallipoli: The Scale of our War exhibition.

Te Papa spokesperson Kate Camp said this January had been a big month thanks to a combination of popular exhibitions, and a great summer in the capital. 

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She said Gallipoli: The Scale of our War, and DreamWorks Animation: The Exhibition had been pulling in the crowds. 

Te Papa's Gallipoli: The Scale of Our War has had more than half a million passengers since it opened in April last year.
Te Papa

Te Papa's Gallipoli: The Scale of Our War has had more than half a million passengers since it opened in April last year.

"Gallipoli is still incredibly popular, and still breaking records ... we've had more than 500,000 visitors to date." 

People had been queueing up every day to see the exhibition since it opened on ANZAC Day last April, she said.

She said the DreamWorks exhibition catered to a slightly different audience, but was also proving to be popular.   

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Camp said it had been interesting to see how long children were staying in the exhibition. 

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"Kids have a low boredom threshold, but I have have seen families in there for an hour, just mesmerised."  

Nearly half of visitors to the museum were from overseas, with cruise ships helping boost numbers from overseas. 

DreamWorks Animation: The Exhibition at Te Papa has played a big part in the museum's bumper January.
Te Papa

DreamWorks Animation: The Exhibition at Te Papa has played a big part in the museum's bumper January.

The success of Te Papa was a turnaround from a couple of years ago, when the museum's exhibits failed to draw in the numbers expected.  

Camp said the museum was in increasingly good shape. 

"We're proud of where we are and that we're creating things that are reaching such a big audience." 

Wellington Regional Development Agency chief executive Chris Whelan said the museum's success was great news for Wellington. 

He said the agency worked in partnership with Te Papa to market their exhibitions. 

"There's no question that Gallipoli: The Scale of our War and DreamWorks Animation: the Exhibition are tremendously appealing products," he said. 

 - Stuff

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