365 Places: Dunedin

Day 78: Dunedin, Aotearoa (New Zealand)

Today I am posting about a place I hope to go to one day soon. I have not yet travelled to the South Island of Aotearoa and it is high on my list as I have travelled to the North Island twice and have made some good friendships with some wonderful people there.

Dunedin pano from signal hillCC BY-SA 3.0 Deanpemberton

Dunedin pano from signal hillCC BY-SA 3.0

Although I have never travelled to Dunedin, last year I produced an augmented reality ‘walk’ around town for an arts event. The art project revealed buildings that had been demolished for significantly changed over the years. The project titled Walks of Absent Memory was featured as part of the ADA Mesh Cities Symposium in Dunedin. ADA stands for Aotearoa Digital Arts Network and I am really excited to be a part of ADA Mesh Cities again this year in Auckland – but more about that in another post.

When I was developing the work for the project in Dunedin, I spent a lot of time looking at the town through old photographs and Google Street View. It was fun to develop an understanding of a place remotely as my perception was shaped only through what I had read and seen online.

67-69 Princes Street Dresden Building (Capitol Building)

67-69 Princes Street
Dresden Building (Capitol Building)

Some of the things I learnt about Dunedin include that it was the most populous city until 1900 and the largest territorially until 2010, when it was superseded by Auckland. Dunedin is also the second-largest city in the South Island and the principal city of the Otago Region. Although Dunedin is only the seventh largest city in Aotearoa, it is still considered to be one of the four main cities of NZ for historic, cultural, and geographic reasons.

I also learnt it is a very pretty place with nice beaches a lovely harbour and numerous historic buildings. It was also well-known as a university town and has a thriving arts community and some excellent galleries including the Dunedin Public Art Gallery.

Undoubtably Dunedin is a place I want to visit. I hope to one day go to Aotearoa and have the time to travel around and explore this beautiful country. The bits I have seen so far are just stunning and I am keen to learn more about this magical place.

Note: In this post and in future posts I will more commonly call New Zealand by its Maori name Aotearoa, though sometimes I will just use the initials NZ as an abbreviation.