Not what you were expecting?
When I walked the beaches of the far south coast a few weeks ago, I wasn’t expecting it either. The usually empty stretches of sand were littered with the dead and dying bodies of hundreds upon hundreds of short-tail shearwaters, commonly called mutton-birds. These events are called ‘wrecks’. They occur when these migratory birds return to Australia to breed after a journey of some 15,000 kilometres from the Bering Sea near eastern Russia, Canada and Alaska. If they are unable to feed or rest in calm water, they can perish in their thousands. They then wash up on the beach, exhausted, emaciated and half drowned.
As the second Ashes test on Australian soil for the 2013-14 series begins in Adelaide tomorrow, I wonder what Colonel Light would think of the growth of his city and in particular the re-development of Adelaide Oval. Since 1938, the statue of Colonel Light has watched over the city of Adelaide, perfectly positioned on Montefiore Hill. The view towards the city, with Adelaide Oval in the foreground, is known as Light’s Vision and has for many years featured on postcards and promotional shots of Adelaide. Continue reading
How does a tree get a name – and a portrait?
As an intern with the National Museum I’ve had the amazing opportunity to spend some time getting hands on with objects while the Horses in Australia project is being put together. It’s a mammoth task and takes a lot of work from people in a number of different sections of the museum. Most recently I worked with the National Museum Conservation Team on a landau horse drawn carriage that has spent a large chunk of the last 50 years stored in a shed on the ‘Springfield’ property south of Goulburn.
Though at times exhausting, the events of last week have reminded me just why I love my job so much.
My talented film-maker colleague, Jeremy Lucas, and I have just returned, footsore and triumphant, from an epic four days of filming in Melbourne and regional Victoria. As part of the Museum’s current Horses in Australia project, we’re working on a short documentary film to be produced in-house. The film will explore the background of one of my favourite objects in the Museum’s collection – a horse-drawn wagon used by the Tighe family to deliver milk to suburban Essendon between the 1950s and 1980s.
Australians seem to be falling in love with chooks. Poultry keeping and showing is booming around the country, and the Museum is building its own flock.
The Museum recently acquired an oil painting, by S.R. Robertson, of ‘Robert’, a striking black-red, hard feathered, Modern Game Bantam. This magnificent rooster won the Waugh Cup for ‘best bird’ at the Old Goulburn Poultry, Pigeon and Canary Club’s annual show in 1921. Continue reading
We need your help to name our exhibition about horses in Australia.
How do we imagine the Great Barrier Reef? Does how we see this amazing marine environment decide whether or how we care for it?
The Great Barrier Reef stretches along the Queensland coast for over 3,000 kilometres, an intricate ecosystem including hundreds of kinds of corals, sponges, molluscs, rays, fish, birds, turtles, whales, dugongs, dolphins, plants, microscopic organisms, sea-water flows, sunshine and, of course, people.
They were big, bulky, orange and made you look like you were about to be fired from a circus cannon. If you were spotted near your school (and, let’s face it, stealth was impossible when you were wearing one of these skidlids), you could be guaranteed days of ridicule, if not complete ostracism. If the FJ Holden is a key symbol of 1950s Australia, has the Stackhat earned the right to become an icon of the 1980s?
Don’t we all wish we had some heroism in our family line? Somebody to be proud of and whose courage and spirit we perhaps could hope to have inherited? Well this is not just a wish but reality for one group of cousins who recently visited the Museum to view prized family heirlooms that commemorate their ancestors’ famed bravery. Continue reading