National Army Museum, Waiouru, New Zealand : Military History & Army War Museum

Thornton Gallery

Thornton Gallery

A travelling exhibition coming from the Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa.

Portrait of a World War I soldier with a prosthetic hand, 1918. Photographer unknown. Te Papa (O.031470)

Road to Recovery: Disabled soldiers of World War I reflects on the unimaginable physical destruction caused by the war. The exhibition explores how New Zealand soldiers disabled in the hostilities were supported to regain their personal and economic independence.

Eight large-scale exhibition prints taken during the last year of the war poignantly illustrate some of these efforts at self-reliance. The photographs are displayed with examples of handwork carefully crafted by soldiers recovering in hospital, and by returned veterans whose disabilities made it impossible for them to hold down full-time jobs.

Road to Recovery was developed as part of Te Papa’s four-year Conflict and Identity programme. It draws on research undertaken for the Te Papa Press publication Holding on to Home: New Zealand Stories and Objects of the First World War, by Kate Hunter and Kirstie Ross.

Exhibition now open.