Inside the Collection

Category: Collections

From the moon to Camp Quality: Norman Hetherington’s puppets

December 3, 2013

Damian McDonald
Norman Hetherington was a creator of wonder, but also, what may not be as well known, he was a creator of edifying realism. Having served in the Second World War, Hetherington got a taste of and developed a talent for performance art, being part of an entertainment unit.

Casinos and stadiums: Philip Cox

November 4, 2013

Charles Pickett
The architect Philip Cox recently told us what we already knew:  Star casino in Pyrmont is by far his worst building. Needless to say a Star flack was immediately reassuring the media that almost none of Cox’s 1997 design had survived the casino’s recent renovations.

Vintage Farm Machinery – a Museum volunteer’s experience

October 28, 2013

Margaret Simpson
Before my recent role as a volunteer, any semblance of interest towards farm machinery and equipment came from when I was as a small child, diligently preparing the family vegie garden by raking the soil with all the exuberance that a young child could muster.

The Opera House industry

October 18, 2013

Charles Pickett
We’ve just installed a small exhibition to mark the fortieth anniversary of Sydney Opera House on 20 October. The anniversary, by the way, is of the official 1973 opening by the Queen, not the first public performance there on the 28 September 1973, an interesting choice of dates.

The Australian Navy’s centenary, October 2013

September 30, 2013

Debbie Rudder
To mark the centenary of the Royal Australian Navy, I’ve chosen to feature this naval phone, one of several that were crucial to the operation of the navy’s first flagship, HMAS Australia. I have a particular interest in that ship because my grandfather served on it for much of the First World War. The ‘loud-speaking’ hands-free voice-activated phone was used to communicate between the bridge and engine room.

Powerhouse Museum Pop-UP @ Haldon Street Festival, Lakemba

September 2, 2013

Melanie Pitkin
On Saturday 24th August, the Powerhouse Museum ‘popped-up’ with a small object display and promotional stall at the Haldon Street Festival in Lakemba. Attended by more than 20,000 people, predominantly from the local Canterbury Council area, the festival was a fantastic opportunity for the Museum to bring some of its collection to the people – in particular, objects which not only help to promote a major upcoming exhibition opening at the Museum in 2014, but which have a special relevance and connection to some of the audiences we’re visiting.  The two objects selected for display at this particular Pop-UP was the wasekaseka split sperm whale’s tooth necklace from Fiji dating to the mid-19th century and a contemporary neckpiece titled ‘Red Drop’ by Norwegian designer, Liv Blavarp.

The communising of the mobile computer devise

August 14, 2013

Damian McDonald
'The revolution is not an apple that falls when it is ripe. You have to make it fall'.  Che Guevara Computing devices are now so ensconced in our lives that the notion of being deprived of one of these devices is seen as a removal of liberty.

Museums and modernism in Marseille

August 12, 2013

Charles Pickett
I’ve been holidaying in Europe recently; mainly Italy and Greece, but we also managed a day in Marseille. France’s oldest and second-largest city is European City of Culture for 2013 so there is even more to see than usual.

Lost paintings from the pub wall

May 15, 2013

Charles Pickett
Jim Brown was a former US serviceman who lived in Sydney from 1968 to 1972. Like a lot of people back then he was struck by the oil-on-glass pub advertising paintings which adorned most of Sydney’s pubs.

Blundstone tapboots

April 3, 2013

Debbie Rudder
These boots were made for dancing. They are Blundstone work boots modified for tap dancing in the Sydney Olympic Games Opening Ceremony. Entering into the quirky, innovative spirit of Wallace & Gromit’s World of Invention, I selected them for display alongside the staid historic Wellington boots that came from Britain with the exhibition.

Doing jigsaws at work, recapturing an 1880s image

March 20, 2013

Kate Chidlow
Most people don't have the patience to attempt what our recent intern, Amir Mogadam from the Universtiy of Newcastle has just finished – probably one of the most challenging jigsaws you’re ever likely to see.