Footprints on the Land

How Humans Changed New Zealand

Footprints on the Land
Richard Wolfe
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Richard Wolfe eloquently summarises this book' s scope in his Introduction:' For upwards of 800 years, humans have made New Zealand their home, modifying the landscape to suit their needs. Although there can be no going back to the land' s original pristine condition, an awareness of the history of these changes will provide both a background and surely improve understanding of our present circumstances and challenges' . Footprints on the Land tracks those changes - from early settlement and wars through to state building, with railways, species introductions, milling, mining and farming. Later chapters recount the impacts of urbanisation, draining and flooding, and the car, before considering the threats and opportunities that now face New Zealanders as a result. Wolfe' s timely tour of the human place on these islands is distinguished by art and photography that display what we' ve created and what we' ve lost.
Richard Wolfe is an art, design and cultural historian who has a PhD in Art History from the University of Auckland and a BFA from the Elam School of Fine Arts. He was Curator of Display at Auckland War Memorial Museum from 1977 to 1997, and has written or co-authored around 40 books covering aspects of New Zealand art, history and popular culture. He has contributed over 50 articles to the quarterly Art New Zealand, as well as articles to other journals, and has curated or supported the development of multiple art exhibitions.