Sydney Jewish Museum: The Fate of Things

In October 2018 I wrote a review on the Sydney Jewish Museum and its newly renovated permanent display (link). I basically had the same thoughts and feelings after visiting this time so I don’t want to repeat myself. I did, however, listen to the audio guide. I wish it was accessible outside of the museum so I could revisit some of the testimonies and read the more in depth information provided. Inside the museum space, it worked really well and, although the interface was quite clunky, it was so enlightening to have survivor testimonies available in each display area.

I also must say that the front of house staff were exceptional and made sure we knew exactly how to download the app and how it worked. Thank you!Read More »

The State Library of New South Wales: UNESCO Six

Members of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities are respectfully advised that this blog post contains the name and image of someone who has passed away.

I had a wonderful afternoon exploring The State Library of New South Wales and visiting the newly opened Michael Crouch Family Galleries. I was particularly interested to see the exhibition, UNESCO Six, a display of six significant collections that form part of Australia’s collective memory. I was lucky enough to be joined by a good friend which made the visit even more thought-provoking and enjoyable.

I don’t want to delve into this too much, but, I must begin by commenting on the problems of collective memory. Deeming certain things significant to a collective memory is absolutely riddled with exclusiveness and, potentially, alienation. What is deemed significant? Who makes these decisions and how much input is sought from the community? According to the exhibition, more collections from New South Wales will be added in years to come and these six collections only represent a segment of what is inscribed on the Memory of the World Register. Rather than solving the problem of who is in this collective memory and why, adding more to the mix might just exacerbate things.Read More »