About Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision


Filmcraft, New Zealand Government Publicity Office (logo detail)

Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision is the brand name for the New Zealand Archive of Film, Television and Sound Ngā Taonga Whitiāhua Me Ngā Taonga Kōrero. The Archive was formed by the amalgamation of three of New Zealand’s major audiovisual archives: the New Zealand Film Archive Ngā Kaitiaki O Ngā Taonga Whitiāhua, Sound Archives Ngā Taonga Kōrero, and the Television New Zealand Archive. Between 2012 and 2014 the New Zealand Film Archive and the Sound Archives were integrated, and launched as Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision in August 2014. Also in August 2014, the Television New Zealand Archive was transferred from the broadcaster to the Ministry for Culture and Heritage – it is now managed on a day-to-day basis by Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision.


We are excited to bring New Zealand’s film, television and radio collections together at Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision, where they will be cared for by our specialist staff. Together they will tell richer stories about our country and its peoples.



Surf Girl, Roy Evans, c1958

Our name, Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision, represents a continuity between past and present. It draws from the names of the organisations that came together to form this new integrated Archive. It also reflects our commitment to New Zealand’s cultural heritage, the people and places recorded in our collections, the histories and stories told, and the collection objects themselves – all as types of taonga (or treasure). Our logo, with its takarangi double spiral, evokes a waka huia – a box for storing a person’s most prized possessions – while also visually echoing various types of sound and vision: an eye, an ear, a film reel, transmission waves, or a record spinning.


Preservation expertise and knowledge about the collections has been built over decades. Archiving of the sound collections dates back to the 1930s, when the state broadcaster established a “Special Library”; and preservation of the moving image collections dates back to 1981, when the New Zealand Film Archive was established.


Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision is an independent Charitable Trust, with a Board of Trustees reflecting archival expertise, screen and audio industry experience, knowledge of tikanga, and governance experience. The archive’s constitution and kaupapa express a commitment to collecting, protecting and connecting New Zealand’s audiovisual heritage with the widest possible audience. The archive is standards-based, collaborative and audience-focused – these values are intrinsic to our organisation’s structure.


Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision is a bicultural organisation built on te Tiriti O Waitangi. All staff are committed to upholding the principles of the Treaty. In particular, our Tāha Māori department actively develops relationships with whānau, hapū, iwi and Māori organisations to ensure appropriate long-term care of and access to sound and moving image materials.


The archive holds a large and diverse collection of moving image and audio items, along with related documentation (publicity materials, stills, posters, production records, props, costumes and equipment). The collections date from 1895 and span our sound and moving image history – from the earliest days of cinema, audio recording and television, to contemporary film, television, advertisements, music videos, computer games and radio productions.


The collections, which date from 1895, include amateur recordings, public broadcasts and commercially released productions.

The collections include amateur recordings, public broadcasts and commercially released productions. They present a range of perspectives on what it has meant to be a New Zealander across history.


When an item is in the care of the archive, it remains the property of the depositor. Material is deposited voluntarily – and without cost to the depositor. Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision’s guardianship ensures ownership of the original item and copyright are retained by the appropriate parties.


Material is deposited voluntarily – and without cost to the depositor. Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision maintains a guardianship role for the collections.

The collections are accessible nationwide. Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision has branches in Wellington, Auckland and Christchurch. The archive hosts regular programmes of screenings, exhibitions and events in Wellington and Auckland, and frequently tours material from the collections around New Zealand. Click here to find out about upcoming screenings and events. Medianet – a network of digital video access sites in partner art galleries, libraries and museums across New Zealand – allows you to view more than 1000 moving image titles free of charge. A number of items are also available for viewing or listening online via our online catalogues– check these often, as new material is continually being added.


The archive encourages research based on its collections. Reference libraries at our Wellington and Auckland branches, and access to collections by appointment in Christchurch, enable researchers to view and listen to much of the collection. Staff are on hand to assist with specialist research and large scale projects. A good starting point for researchers are the online catalogues, which search the Archive’s holdings.



The Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision collection spans 120 years and countless different technologies

Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision adheres to international archiving standards, and is a member of: AMIA (Association of Moving Image Archivists), ARANZ (Archives and Records Association of New Zealand), ARSC (Association for Recorded Sound Collections), ASRA (Australasian Sound Recordings Association), FIAF (Fédération Internationale des Archives du Film), FIAT (Fédération Internationale des Archives du Television), IASA (International Association of Sound and Audiovisual Archives), NOHANZ (National Oral History Association of New Zealand), and SEAPAVAA (South East Asia and Pacific Audio-Visual Archives Association).