Year: 2014

Home made commode an ‘ensuite’ from 1909

April 7, 2014

A commode is defined as 'a stand or cupboard containing a chamber pot or washbasin'. They date from before the days of sewerage and flushing toilets, when for obvious reasons, the toilet or can was located outside the house, usually at the far end of the backyard.

Celebrating arts and crafts at the Sydney Royal Easter Show

April 2, 2014

Sydney's Royal Easter Show came from agricultural beginnings. In 1822 in a new and small colony the Royal Agricultural Society was formed with the intention of increasing livestock within the colony and sharing farming practices.

Meccano orrery for Earth Hour

March 26, 2014

Saturday 29th March 2014 from 8.30pm to 9.30pm EST is Earth Hour, when we get the chance to turn off the lights and possibly consider our place in the universe. This Meccano orrery is a clever mechanical device used to demonstrate the position, motions and phases of our Earth and the Moon as we orbit the Sun.

Cockatoo Island: From industry to art

March 24, 2014

This image from the Museum's Kerry and Co collection shows Cockatoo Island in the late 1800s. Now one of the venues for the Sydney Biennale, the island has had a diverse past, as a home to convicts, ship builders and now artists.

Henry Parkes and the ‘crimson thread of kinship’

March 19, 2014

In a speech to a Federation Conference banquet in 1890, Henry Parkes coined the term crimson thread of kinship to describe the ties that bound the Australian colonies. The reference was to shared Anglo-Celtic bloodlines, to the exclusion of Indigenous, Asian and other contributors to nation-building and the nation’s gene pool.

Max Dupain and Chris Vandyke

March 17, 2014

You might have seen the story re the State Library of NSW's recent acquisition of a photo album containing a different version of Max Dupain's well-known 1937 'Sunbaker' photo. That Max disliked the widely published version doesn't strike me as headline cultural news (well done to the State Library's pr people tho).

This week, in Game Masters, Part II…

March 5, 2014

As promised, the newly acquired Magnavox Odyssey gaming console went on exhibit in the Game Masters exhibition mid-February. If you’re looking for it, it’s just before ‘Arcade Heroes’ in the alcove of Game Masters; just across from the double click showcase housing similarly exciting game consoles from the Powerhouse Museum Collection.

Innovation, mining and bush regeneration

February 26, 2014

Broken Hill in the far west of NSW is not necessarily the first place you would think of as the beginning of bush regeneration. It is known more for its mining than its environmental history. However the earliest green action in Australia was inspired by Albert Morris and the Barrier Field Naturalists Club in Broken Hill.