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The changing role of migration museums in Australia
Andrea Witcomb

16 Curating relations between ‘us’ and ‘them’: the changing role of migration museums in Australia1 Andrea Witcomb I would also like to ask two related things … which have puzzled me since a brief visit to the museum some years ago. One is to ask if you want donations of crafts and small items used in households in South Australia during [the] last century? These are from the wave of first settlers, ie. Anglo-Celtic. The related question is whether the museum is mainly about the subsequent waves of settlers or is the history of the early mainly Anglo

in Curatopia
Abstract only
Catherine J. Frieman

populations, which are described in racial rather than geographic terms, so H. s. sapiens are “Caucasian” while H. s. americanus are “American Indian” and H. s. tasmanianus are “Australian Black.” In fact, while most of these sub-species identifications were discarded in the final quarter of the twentieth century, 1 H. s. sapiens – our doubly wise selves – has remained in use in places (e.g., in popular communication, by the Australian Museum, as well as in scholarly contexts, such as Mithen 1998 , 175). 2 Modern usage, however, sees the sub

in An archaeology of innovation
Abstract only
Museums and the future of curatorship

What is the future of curatorial practice? How can the relationships between Indigenous people in the Pacific, collections in Euro-American institutions and curatorial knowledge in museums globally be (re)conceptualised in reciprocal and symmetrical ways? Is there an ideal model, a ‘curatopia’, whether in the form of a utopia or dystopia, which can enable the reinvention of ethnographic museums and address their difficult colonial legacies? This volume addresses these questions by considering the current state of the play in curatorial practice, reviewing the different models and approaches operating in different museums, galleries and cultural organisations around the world, and debating the emerging concerns, challenges and opportunities. The subject areas range over native and tribal cultures, anthropology, art, history, migration and settler culture, among others. Topics covered include: contemporary curatorial theory, new museum trends, models and paradigms, the state of research and scholarship, the impact of new media and current issues such as curatorial leadership, collecting and collection access and use, exhibition development and community engagement. The volume is international in scope and covers three broad regions – Europe, North America and the Pacific. The contributors are leading and emerging scholars and practitioners in their respective fields, all of whom have worked in and with universities and museums, and are therefore perfectly placed to reshape the dialogue between academia and the professional museum world.

Art, process, archaeology

This book presents a study of material images and asks how an appreciation of the making and unfolding of images and art alters archaeological accounts of prehistoric and historic societies. With contributions focusing on case studies including prehistoric Britain, Scandinavia, Iberia, the Americas and Dynastic Egypt, and including contemporary reflections on material images, it makes a novel contribution to ongoing debates relating to archaeological art and images. The book offers a New Materialist analysis of archaeological imagery, with an emphasis on considering the material character of images and their making and unfolding. The book reassesses the predominantly representational paradigm of archaeological image analysis and argues for the importance of considering the ontology of images. It considers images as processes or events and introduces the verb ‘imaging’ to underline the point that images are conditions of possibility that draw together differing aspects of the world. The book is divided into three sections: ‘Emergent images’, which focuses on practices of making; ‘Images as process’, which examines the making and role of images in prehistoric societies; and ‘Unfolding images’, which focuses on how images change as they are made and circulated. The book features contributions from archaeologists, Egyptologists, anthropologists and artists. The contributors to the book highlight the multiple role of images in prehistoric and historic societies, demonstrating that archaeologists need to recognise the dynamic and changeable character of images.

Catherine J. Frieman

studies of contact and colonialism – that make those complex social processes so visible and accessible to us for study. Innovation adoption at the point of colonial contact Today people living in Australia use steel axes, not stone ones. 1 Stone axes (and other knapped and ground lithic implements) litter the Australian landscape. Along with a suite of organic objects – woven dilly bags, wooden spears, shields and boomerangs, bone implements, leather and skin cloaks and adornment – they are among the best known and most recognizable archaeological materials in

in An archaeology of innovation
Open Access (free)
Duncan Sayer

expectations and expressions of gender identity (Reay, 1998 ). Modern Australian, Welsh, Scottish, Irish, English or American societies all have subtly, and not so subtly, different approaches to the body, family, marriage, childbirth, social class, gender and age or education, based on wider cultural contexts like history, religion or law. Most importantly there is not in fact a single approach to these ideas in any of the places described. Indeed, your own attitude to family, for example, might depend on your past, your background and, importantly, the regional or class

in Early Anglo-Saxon cemeteries
Catherine J. Frieman

of our innovation discourse and suggest how a more critical archaeological perspective might allow for a deeper discussion of technological and social change in both the past and the present. The strange case of Tasmanian technological change In 1971, Rhys Jones submitted his Ph.D. to the Australian National University and, without meaning to, set the first sparks of a conflagration that would engulf the Australian archaeological community for years and that continues to flicker to this day. Jones spent nearly a decade in Tasmania running the first scientific

in An archaeology of innovation
Nicholas Thomas

concerned with what lies behind the creation and resourcing of Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa (Te Papa), the Musée du Quai Branly or the National Museum of Australia, the ascendancy of the British Museum, or museum-friendly policies on the part of governments and local authorities – though of course there is much to be said about new conceptions of culture and governance, and the growing preoccupation with tourism as a driver for urban regeneration and economic growth. I am interested, rather, in how we (curators of ethnographic collections) conceive of what we

in Curatopia
Bronwyn Labrum

development of the professional role of history curator, like the notion of academic history, is a relatively recent phenomenon. Curating Te Papa 1998 By the time New Zealand’s national museum was being developed into what would become Te Papa, with an avowed focus on multidisciplinary displays, the curating and exhibiting of history looked very different. The form of this ‘new’ history was shaped by a range of factors familiar to those in other revamped national museums in Canada and Australia at this time: the wider political and social context, ideas about popular

in Curatopia
Remaking the ethnographic museum in the global contemporary
Viv Golding and Wayne Modest

are emotionally fraught.32 How can this thinking be translated into museum practice? We want to illustrate this through the Australian Aboriginal artist Christian Thompson’s ongoing collaboration with the Pitt Rivers Museum, Oxford, UK. Thompson was born in 1978 to a father of the Bidjara Indigenous people of central South West Queensland, Australia, and a mother of British heritage. He was educated in the Netherlands and in England, winning a Charlie Perkins Scholarship to the University of Oxford in 2010, making him one of the first two Australian Aboriginal

in Curatopia