MOTAT’s Changing Gear exhibition wins at Museums Aotearoa Awards

MOTAT’s Changing Gear exhibition wins at Museums Aotearoa Awards


​The most engaging, visionary, resourceful and innovative exhibitions, programmes and museum projects were celebrated at the Museums Aotearoa 2018 ServiceIQ New Zealand Museum Awards.

The Museum of Transport and Technology (MOTAT) is celebrating their win in the Exhibition Excellence – Social History category for their Changing Gear exhibition, which tackled the topical issue of cycling. An extremely timely exhibition, the judges acknowledged that it demonstrated how a museum can operate as a platform to inform debate and shape attitudes.


​MOTAT Exhibitions Manager, Rebecca Britt says of the award win: “The Museums Aotearoa awards showcase the best of this great industry and it’s an honour for MOTAT to be recognised, especially as we were among such outstanding finalists.”

Changing Gear explores the history of cycling in New Zealand and its growing place in our cities while showcasing innovations in the world of bikes, from the high tech to the quirky! Since the first rickety boneshaker hit Aotearoa’s cobbled streets, Kiwis have embraced the spirit of the bicycle; adapting its shape to fit our needs and using it as a tool for change.

With plentiful interactives and digital experiences, this exhibition gives visitors a chance to play digital dress ups in cycling clothes through the ages, experience the thrill of riding a BMX or mountain bike, test the power of their legs on Team New Zealand’s cycle grinders and have a go at improving a city by supporting cyclists.



​Says Ms Britt, “This award reflects not only the relevance and appeal of cycling in Aotearoa, but the hard work and dedication of a great team who were determined to bring it to life in a fun, hands-on and thought provoking way.”

MOTAT’s chief executive Michael Frawley says: “Changing Gear showcases how cycling has evolved from the days when pioneering Auckland bike builders were offering staff a bonus to ride their velocipedes down Queen Street, to the use of cycle technology on the winning Americas Cup Boat and what the future could entail.”

We want our visitors to be inspired by Kiwi innovators like Bill Pratney who began his professional cycling career in 1929 and for the next 60 years went on to show the world that Kiwi and Māori cyclists were a force to be reckoned with,” adds Mr Frawley.



​With a focus on improving the safety for people on bikes and the aim to get more people using Auckland’s cycleways which provide safe, separated connections to bike around the city, Auckland Transport was naturally aligned to partner with MOTAT to bring this exhibition to life.

From the great outdoors to urban streets, bicycles have shaped our environment and enriched our lives. Visitors are invited to come and explore the possibilities at Changing Gear and go in the draw to win their very own SmartMotion e-bike valued at $2,500. The exhibition is open at MOTAT daily from 10am to 5pm until Monday 4 June  2018 so don’t miss your chance to visit this award-winning exhibition.

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