Queensland Museum: NASA – A Human Adventure

I want to begin this blog post by saying this exhibition, NASA – A Human Adventure, has been created to celebrate 50 years since the Moon Landing. Since then, the historiography of who was involved has been revised exposing those, particularly women, who achieved virtually the impossible to make the event happen. Unfortunately, this exhibition does not include them. I wanted to get this out of the way because I was so excited to see the exhibition and left feeling as if these important figures in history have yet again been hidden. This was a real opportunity to include these forgotten histories. Alas, the opportunity was not grasped and I believe the exhibition suffered from it.

I would by lying if I said this didn’t taint my entire experience. As I went from room to room looking at huge posters of American and Soviet Union men I was continuously hopeful that the other stories might be around the next corner. Read More »

Art Gallery of New South Wales: The Archibald Prize

This weekend I had the wonderful opportunity to visit the Art Gallery of New South Wales and see The Archibald Prize finalists for 2019. Although I technically saw finalists from The Archibald, Wynne and Sulman Prizes, I just want to focus on The Archibald. This was my second time visiting an Archibald exhibition. If you’re interested in reading about the exhibition in 2017, you can follow the link here.

In that post I gave a brief history of the Prize and talked about some positives and negatives. Can I just say that after rereading that post to prepare for this one, I realised I have almost exactly the same comments to make. The labels were still problematic (do not get me started on kid’s labels), but, the overall vibe of the exhibition was fantastic. The balance of artworks throughout the rooms meant it felt spacious and you could really take your time looking around and not feel rushed.Read More »

Australian Museums and Galleries Association Conference Day 5 & Megafauna Central

Conference

This morning was the final plenary for the conference, presented by Ben Quilty, and the official handing over of the conference to Canberra for 2020. Quilty touched on something significant that I believe we can all learn. That is, there is no shame in admitting there are things you don’t know and that you are still learning. It is far better to recognise your limitations and act on them rather than not care at all.

The conference has been a truly humbling experience. There is so much I will be taking away. Above all else will be the fact that I still have so much to learn. As soon as I get back to work I will be reading the Indigenous Roadmap and The University of Queensland’s Reconciliation Action Plan that was just recently launched. On top of this, I am going to ensure that I just listen, whenever I can.Read More »

Australian Museums and Galleries Association Conference Day 4

Well, I think my brain is so full of information it might actually burst. That’s a good indication of how today went at the conference. Everything from the first plenary to the last was just filled with important messages and questions to mull over. In this summary, I’m really going to try and do the day justice. If there are any comments or corrections, I strongly encourage you to leave a comment on this post. Ok, let’s begin.

9.00 am

This morning we had two fantastic plenary sessions. Both were so relevant to the overall theme of the conference with the latter being a significant event to have witnessed.Read More »

Australian Museums and Galleries Association Conference Day 3

What another fantastic day at the Australian Museums and Galleries Association Conference. I am truly grateful to be able to attend and listen to some incredible speakers from all over the country (and internationally). The good news is, there are still two days to go! As per usual, I will be writing this post to basically provide a summary of my day. Because literally so much happened, I am going to try my best to pick out some of the key points from all talks and spend longer on those that I feel left me with food for thought.

9.00 am

First speaker for the plenary this morning was Neil MacGregor who was the former Director of the British Museum and is now working with the Humboldt Forum. I won’t say a lot about this presentation because it skirted some of the most significant issues I wish had been addressed, i.e. Indigenous objects in the British Museum. There were a few interesting points raised including the role of the museum in reflecting and shaping identities. MacGregor also asked a lot of questions for the audience to contemplate. My favourite was, can museums be a place of atonement? I most definitely think museums need to engage in difficult conversations, but, I’ve never thought about whether or not museums can serve this specific function.Read More »

Australian Museums and Galleries Association Conference Day 2

Day 2 of the conference can be divided in half. In the morning we had the final regional, remote & community day(s) sessions. In the afternoon, the start of the official conference. Similar to the post from yesterday, I’m going to basically outline my day and share any highlights and insights. I do want to make it clear that this post will serve as a summary. For those who can’t make the conference, or for those who joined other concurrent sessions, I hope there is something in it for you. This also extends to all other conference posts.

9.00 am

This morning was the final plenary talk for the regional, remote and community day(s). Although technically one day, because it was spread over the afternoon of Monday and morning of Tuesday, I’ve used the (s). To start, we had a panel talk featuring Veronica Perrurle Dobson AM, Fiona Walsh, Daniel Featherstone, Clare Fisher and Kelly Lee Hickey. Each offered some incredible insights into what it means to be at the conference telling their stories about Mparntwe – Alice Springs.Read More »

Australian Museums and Galleries Association Conference Day 1

Greetings from Alice Springs! Today was the first day of the Australian Museums and Galleries Association Conference for 2019. I can already feel that this is going to be quite an interesting conference. Here is what I got up to during the day.

9.00 am

This morning there were a few tours on offer. I selected the Alice to Mparntwe Sacred Sites Tour led by Doris Stuart Kngwarreye (Apmereke – artwye), Dan Murphy and Lucy Stewart. This tour has been running since 2008 when it was launched for the ‘Art in the Heart’ National Regional Arts Australia Conference.Read More »