Museum Projects: 11+ paid staff
WINNER – SYDNEY LIVING MUSEUMS: CELESTIAL CITY: SYDNEY’S CHINESE STORY EXHIBITION AT THE MUSEUM OF SYDNEY
Celestial City: Sydney’s Chinese Story wove a rich tapestry about the lives of Sydney’s early Chinese community and celebrates the pivotal role they played in shaping modern Australia. With vivid personal accounts, archival photographs and stunning family heirlooms, the exhibition spotlighted this fascinating history.
Celestial City demonstrates innovation through its design, articulating the gallery in a new and original way. Structures are used to break up the space resulting in an immersive and intimate visitor experience, complementing the personal family ephemera on display. Large-scale ‘super graphics’ greatly enhance this experience, giving the illusion of being within a larger space. The colour palette also challenges modern perceptions using China’s pre-communist colours instead of red and gold.
Celestial City welcomes visitors with a Chinese market garden outside the museum entrance. On entering the Museum, they are greeted by parasols, lanterns and collection objects are displayed outside the exhibition to create a cohesive journey towards the main exhibition space.
HIGHLY COMMENDED – THE AUSTRALIAN PLANTBANK: PLANTBANK INTERPRETATION
From its conception, The Australian PlantBank was seen as an opportunity to engage the public with important issues of conservation, climate change and environmental sustainability. A range of interpretative techniques and methods have been developed to engage visitors as they journey through the building.
Living plants, historical and scientific objects, day-to-day laboratory work, ground-breaking conservation research, graphics, images and text are used to create stories that stimulate curiosity and contemplation. The interpretation within PlantBank highlights the exciting conservation and research work as a positive and encouraging call to action: that everyone can make a difference in creating a sustainable and healthy future for this planet.
PlantBank is a working science centre, but operates equally as a learning and teaching space — open for public viewing and as a resource for students. This marriage of scientific process, research facility and education is unique, and has enhanced PlantBank’s state-of-the-art scientific endeavours by actively engaging the public, fostering understanding, interest and support.
The Australian PlantBank is a science and research facility of the Royal Botanic Gardens and Domain Trust and is located at the Australian Botanic Garden, Mount Annan.
HURSTVILLE CITY LIBRARY MUSEUM & GALLERY: IF THESE WALLS COULD TALK: STORIES FROM 14 MACMAHON STREET
To celebrate the 10th anniversary at its 14 MacMahon Street premises, the Hurstville City Library Museum & Gallery opened an exhibition featuring the history of the Tudor style building. Built in 1929, the house has seen a variety of uses including as a residence, doctor’s surgery, rugby club, theatre restaurant, gallery and function centre.
The multimedia display consisted of artefacts, photographs, text panels and a social media component to highlight the varied uses of the building from 1929 to 2014. Oral history interviews were a main feature of the exhibition with excerpts made accessible through an audio trail, an audio loop speaker and an iPad kiosk. Through the inclusion of the voices of former tenants and people with direct connections to the building, the history and memories of the building were able to be experienced in a very intimate way.
The Museum & Gallery facilitated the loan of artefacts relevant to the building’s history, including the original door sign of the clubhouse; the wedding video and original pressed wedding bouquet from a couple who were married at the premises in 1930s; and medical objects from the Harry Daly Museum.
A total of 3740 visitors attended the exhibition and its associated programs.