Dr Gina Salapata presents Alan and Ann Jermaine with a gift at the unveiling in Palmerston North in appreciation of their donation of the Tanya Jermaine Collection of classical Greek vase reproductions.
Old meets new as vases offer hands-on learning
A wine jug from the collection, which features one of the earliest known examples of use of the Greek alphabet.
A collection of authentic ancient Greek vase reproductions has been unveiled at the University’s Manawatu campus and offers hands-on learning experiences both in person, and on screen.
The Tanya Jermaine collection was purchased by the School of History, Philosophy and Classics through a donation from alumni Alan and Ann Jermaine, and is named in memory of their daughter.
Senior lecturer in the School of History, Philosophy and Classics Dr Gina Salapata selected the range of antiquities that showcases a variety of shapes, periods and geographic locations that offer a unique view of ancient Greek values and beliefs.
“It is a really special collection,” Dr Salapata says. “It provides us with unique and accessible teaching tools, and is an asset to the University and the wider community.
“The advantage of having reproductions of these subjects means that our students can use them and experiment with them in a very practical and hands-on way, and this brings potential for their use in learning across multiple subject areas,” she says.
Unlike many standard reproductions designed for tourism, this collection has been produced using the same materials and techniques used by the ancient Greeks, making each piece authentic and unique.
Museum Studies staff designed a display cabinet for the pieces, which will be housed in the Sir Geoffrey Peren Building, while National Centre for Teaching and Learning staff designed an interactive online resource allowing the vases to be viewed online, and via iPad, in high-resolution 3D.
“I studied Greek Art with Gina, and discovered through the Internet that there are people who make these reproductions with great detail and faith to the originals,” Mr Jermaine says. “I talked to Gina and found the University was most enthusiastic about having a teaching collection.
“I found to my surprise that of NCEA subjects, Classical Studies was the fifth most popular. I started knocking on doors to raise money for a collection – and then the recession hit. Timing was dreadful.
“Then in 2007 we lost our daughter, Tanya, and wanted to keep her memory alive in a way that was meaningful to her family, and also to others. We feel that this was a good thing for us to do.
“I am overwhelmed by what everybody involved in the project has been able to achieve and stunned that it has gone digital. Now when I get home, I have to buy an iPad, because it’s something we simply have to show the whole family!”
Dr Salapata says the Jermaines' donation and continued support for the project’s development is something the University and the community will treasure, and is thrilled by what the collaboration has achieved in “bridging the very old with the very new”.