• Inside the Collection

Category: Collections

Design Nation: When Australian Design Moulded the World

March 1, 2018

Colonised Australia felt it had grown into an independent, and quite sexy young adult by the 1980s. The 1988 bicentenary was a celebration of all that Europeans had acheived in Australia in 200 years.  It was also a year which benefited from the optimism of the Wran NSW Labor Government - which commissioned, among other public institutions and spaces, the ingeniously designed converted power station as the new home for the Museum of Applied Arts and Sciences in Ultimo, Sydney.

Cuberider: Australia’s first payload to the ISS

February 7, 2018

Almost exactly a year ago, the Museum was approached by Sydney start-up Cuberider with an unusual offer. In December 2016 Cuberider had launched Australia’s first ever payload to the International Space Station (ISS) – a Raspberry Pi computer used to run science experiments designed by high school students around the country.

Image of the 1906 total lunar eclipse

January 31, 2018

On Wednesday 31 January, 2018, Australia and New Zealand will experience a total lunar eclipse. This occurs when the moon moves completely into the Earth’s shadow, blocking out the Sun’s light, and plunging the moon into darkness.

Storing a collection of 500,000 objects

January 17, 2018

The MAAS collection contains an estimated 500 000 objects. These objects are routinely moved around the Museum as they are taken on and off display, undergo conservation work, are photographed for publications, or even loaned to other museums and institutions across Australia and internationally.

Viennese Nef c 1880

December 20, 2017

In preparation for the display of this intriguing copper-and-silver nef, one of the Museum’s late 19th century Viennese ornaments, our conservators located previously hidden maker’s marks which prompted renewed attention to the object’s origin, design and function.

Faith Fashion Fusion: Muslim Women’s Style in Australia

December 7, 2017

Project Manager Kate Ford and Curator Glynis Jones recently installed Museum of Applied Arts and Sciences (MAAS) travelling exhibition Faith Fashion Fusion: Muslim Women’s Style in Australia at the Islamic Arts Museum Malaysia (IAMM) in Kuala Lumpur.

Behind the Scenes Interning

November 21, 2017

Chloe Appleby is a university student who has spent the last 4 months interning in the Curatorial department at MAAS. Below she reports on her experience and what parts of her internship she enjoyed the most.

New Acquisitions: Kate Rohde’s Deer Vase and bespoke wallpaper

November 7, 2017

The artworks of Melbourne-based artist and designer Kate Rohde are recognisable for their exuberant embrace of form and pattern. Baroque in style, highly ornate and vibrating with colour, the works claim a unique position in contemporary Australian design.

Inspiration, Expiration and Methods of Release

September 21, 2017

This elegantly choreographed image from the studio of Kerry & Co. shows young women from the Bronte Surf Life Saving Brigade modelling three methods of ‘release’ used in lifesaving c. 1908.

Ask a Curator Day 2017

September 12, 2017

The Museum staff have a huge job caring for our enormous collection of over 500,000 objects. Our team includes experts in a vast range of areas, including: fashion, health and medicine, architecture, engineering, sciences, design, decorative arts, technologies and contemporary culture.

Nightingales, Sirens, Ventriloquists and Gramophones: This is a Voice

September 6, 2017

Plutarch (b. 46 CE) tells the story of a man who plucks the feathers from a Nightingale and on finding nothing more than a scrawny body not worth eating, exclaims ‘You are a voice and nothing more.’ The power and potency of the voice, in this case, the human voice, is the focus of the exhibition This is a Voice which opened at the Powerhouse Museum on August 10.