Image Health stamps poster

TLF ID R2033

This is a full-colour poster (57 cm x 44.5 cm) featuring an illustration of children playing at the beach. In the foreground, a boy with a spade at his side stands by a heap of sand he has dug, flexing his arm muscles. Two girls and another boy, all dressed in swimwear, are looking at the central figure. Across the bottom are the words 'BUY HEALTH STAMPS FOR HEALTH CAMPS'. The poster was produced in 1932.

Educational details

Educational value
  • This asset is an example of the type of poster that was produced to promote the sale of postage stamps to help fund New Zealand's health camps for children - by the 1930s, these camps, begun in 1919 by Dr Elizabeth Gunn, a school medical officer for Wanganui, were a national institution (the National Federation of Health Camps) under the general oversight of the Department of Health, and were held at various sites around New Zealand.
  • It uses images of healthy, active children to promote the camps - sun, fresh air and exercise were considered part of the solution to the main child health issues of the time, malnutrition and tuberculosis; the camps were run on military lines, with regular times for sleeping and eating a diet of fresh meat, vegetables and milk.
  • It provides an example of the images used in the 1930s to encourage the New Zealand public to support the heath camp initiative - in later campaigns these images of well-fed European children at play gave way to images of the extremely popular Royal Family, particularly in the 1950s.
  • It indicates that at the time this poster was made, boys were shown as being more active and stronger than girls, who in this image look on passively from seated positions.
  • It is an example of design aesthetics from the 1930s, the poster's simple decorative style and natural setting showing the influence of the Art Deco art movement.

Other details

  • Content provider
  • Copyright holder
  • Organisation: Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa
  • Remarks: Reproduced courtesy of the Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa
  • Author
  • Date of contribution: 1932
  • Name: Marmaduke Matthews
  • Remarks: designer
  • Author
  • Date of contribution: 1932
  • Organisation: E V Paul Government Printer
  • Remarks: printer
  • Publisher
  • Date of contribution: 28 Aug 2013
  • Organisation: Education Services Australia
  • Address: Melbourne VIC 3000 Australia
  • URL:
Access profile
  • Colour independence
  • Device independence
  • Hearing independence
Learning resource type
  • Image
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  • Firefox - minimum version: (MS-Windows)
  • Safari - minimum version: 5.1 (MacOS)
Operating systems
  • MacOS - minimum version: 10.6
  • MS-Windows - minimum version: XP - maximum version: 7
  • © Education Services Australia Ltd and Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa, 2013, except where indicated under Acknowledgements