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GENERAL ASSEMBLY

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General Assembly

Fiona Jack, Installation (paint, pencil contributions, documents) Mary Newton Gallery, Wellington, 2008

General Assembly asks why New Zealand voted against ratifying the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples in 2007 along with Australia, Canada, and the US. Canada has since signed and Australia have announced that they will, leaving the US and NZ as the only two countries voting against.

The declaration is presented in two parts. The preambular paragraphs, which express the aspirations of the declaration, are each presented as small and detailed paintings of paragraphs that were handwritten by members of the public around the world. The articles of the treaty are written on the wall of the gallery by visitors to the exhibition who choose to contribute.

Update: in April 2010 the NZ government signed this declaration. NZ Herald article

Shinae, Korea, New Zealand
Shinae, Korea, New Zealand
Mose, Samoa, New Zealand
Mose, Samoa, New Zealand
Richard, England, New Zealand
Richard, England, New Zealand
Sock-Cheng, Singapore, New Zealand
Sock-Cheng, Singapore, New Zealand
Sonya, New Zealand, New Zealand
Sonya, New Zealand, New Zealand
Jacinda Australia, Australia
Jacinda Australia, Australia
Rabdeep, New Zealand, New Zealand
Rabdeep, New Zealand, New Zealand
Tamsen, New Zealand, New Zealand
Tamsen, New Zealand, New Zealand
Kassy, New Zealand, New Zealand
Kassy, New Zealand, New Zealand
Peter, Australia, Australia
Peter, Australia, Australia
Sara, New Zealand, Canada
Sara, New Zealand, Canada
Toshi, Canada, Australia
Toshi, Canada, Australia
Ruth, New Zealand, New Zealand
Ruth, New Zealand, New Zealand
Rebecca, New Zealand, New Zealand
Rebecca, New Zealand, New Zealand
Rachel, Australia, New Zealand
Rachel, Australia, New Zealand
Ash, New Zealand, New Zealand
Ash, New Zealand, New Zealand
Jessica, New Zealand, New Zealand
Jessica, New Zealand, New Zealand
Anne-Marie, New Zealand, New Zealand
Anne-Marie, New Zealand, New Zealand
Emily, New Zealand, lives New Zealand
Emily, New Zealand, lives New Zealand
Loretta, Australia, New Zealand
Loretta, Australia, New Zealand
Joyce, New Zealand, New Zealand
Joyce, New Zealand, New Zealand
Andrea, New Zealand, Australia
Andrea, New Zealand, Australia
Andrew, USA, Australia
Andrew, USA, Australia

United Nations forum (Full declaration text avail here)

Converge website – NGO working towards NZ signing the declaration

New Zealand’s statement

Mary Newton Gallery