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Over 30,000 New Zealanders have died in wars since 1840. They have been remembered in more than 1000 memorials that stand in public places throughout New Zealand. Except on Anzac Day, most people pass by these monuments without really looking at them. Yet a huge amount of social energy and resources went into their creation – the largest act of artistic patronage in our history.
This beautiful book, based on over 30 years of loving research by leading historian Jock Phillips, tells the fascinating story of who erected these memorials and why, and reveals how their diverse forms say much about New Zealand identity and the tragedy of war. The account begins with the memorials to the New Zealand Wars, explores the sculpted monuments to the South African and First World wars, and the ‘living memorials’ to the Second World War, then concludes with the many imaginative artistic responses of the 2000s.
Lavishly illustrated with both contemporary and historic photographs, 'To the Memory' will appeal to a wide variety of people – those whose relatives are named on memorials, those with an interest in war history, those fascinated by the creative arts and built heritage – and anyone who cares about New Zealand, for this is a story that goes to the heart of our identity and our place in the world.