Welcome to our first edition of the Storyplace newsletter
It’s just over a year since the Storyplace website launched. After a year of telling many stories from around NSW, we think this is the right time to begin circulating a Storyplace newsletter. Our timing also coincides with Storyplace’s recent win at the National Trust heritage awards in the Publications and Resources category. You can read what the judges had to say about Storyplace further on in the newsletter.
But more broadly, a key motivation for compiling the newsletter is to bring our followers and readers a ‘behind the scenes’ view of the Storyplace website. We want to highlight and share this information to promote Storyplace and the important but time-consuming processes that make it possible. The newsletter is also an opportunity to acknowledge the many people, communities, and organisations from throughout NSW that support the work behind Storyplace – to date and going forward.
As some readers know, Storyplace is the result of digitisation work supported by M&G NSW in regional NSW since 2018 – through the Collections and Stories (C&S) Project. Aside from enabling greater access to collections. we have advocated for regional collection digitisation and the Storyplace project as a way to support and address some of the challenges our small to medium museum and gallery sector face – including tackling the documentation and cataloguing of collections.
Understanding the provenance of our collections and telling the stories behind each object is the core reason they are kept. We want to learn lessons from our collections now and ensure we can pass them onto future generations. Writing down the knowledge which many collection custodians ‘keep in their heads’ is a way to pass on the meaningful stories that many communities have looked after for decades, or even centuries.
In the regional setting, research, documentation, and conservation care are all especially important preparations for digitising a collection. The steps followed to compile stories for the Storyplace website supplements this digitisation preparation work. Since the Collections and Stories project started, and now with the Storyplace project, we have worked with over 100 small museums and galleries in NSW. It’s a good start, but really, we have just begun.
We hope you enjoy reading about what’s behind, and ahead, for Storyplace.
Kate Gahan – Storyplace Project Manager