Whakamana Cannabis Museum
The original museum in Caversham, photographed in 2016
|Location||Eldon Chambers, Princes Street|
Dunedin, New Zealand
|Type||Science, Social History|
|Founder||Abe Gray, Julian Crawford|
The museum serves as an information service on drug use, ie helpful hints. Its director is long-time cannabis activist Abe Gray, who co-founded the museum along with former Aotearoa Legalise Cannabis Party (ALCP) regional spokesperson Julian Crawford.
Cannabis, while still a criminalised drug in New Zealand, has moved some way towards grudging acceptance, at least as a subject for open discussion. The museum is designed to be a national information centre on aspects of the history and legislation surrounding the drug. Dunedin has had a long history of advocacy for marijuana law reform, largely through the University of Otago's Norml.
Alongside other exhibits, the museum houses a library of books relating to cannabis use and culture, many of them unavailable in more general libraries around the country. In addition to acting as a museum and serving as a centre for drug law reform advocacy, Whakamana promotes open-source computer software. It also features meeting rooms and a digital multimedia studio. The museum operates within New Zealand's laws and does not sell cannabis.
Gray has stated that the presence of the museum and Dunedin's history of support for law change relating to drug use and possession would put it in the ideal position to become a centre for cannabis tourism should the drug ever be legalised in New Zealand.
- "Grand Opening for New Zealand's first cannabis museum", scoop.co.nz, 25 September 2013. Retrieved 14 February 2016.
- Mead, T., "Cannabis museum opens in Dunedin", 3news.co.nz 6 October 2013. Retrieved 14 February 2016.
- Chilton-Towle, J., "Dunedin marijuana museum planned", Otago Daily Times, 1 September 2013. Retrieved 14 February 2016.
- Doyle, C., "", Critic (magazine), 17 September 2018. Retrieved 21 September 2018.