Inside the Collection

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Chanel at the Powerhouse

July 6, 2009

Melanie Pitkin
The recent release of the new Coco Avant Chanel film inspired me to revisit the Museum's very own collection of Chanel fashion to see just how much we hold which dates before the designer's death in 1971.

Speak Up- the opening of the Sydney Harbour Bridge

July 1, 2009

Erika Taylor
What is this block of marble? a geiger counter? what does it have to do with the Sydney Harbour Bridge? Well, it is in fact a microphone! and the very same microphone used at the official opening ceremony of the Sydney Harbour Bridge on 19 March 1932.

Michael Jackson- death of a pop icon

June 26, 2009

Erika Taylor
Everyone at the Powerhouse Museum was saddened to hear of the death of Michael Jackson this morning. He was an unmistakable icon of pop culture. Who can forget the 1982 album “Thriller” , which was one of the world’s highest selling records, and its video film clip which revolutionised the pop music film clip industry.

Hot off the press

June 24, 2009

Debbie Rudder
Photo courtesy of The Bank of England Three early Boulton and Watt rotative steam engines still exist, and all are held by museums: Boulton's own Lap engine in the London Science Museum, the Barclay Perkins engine in the National Museum of Scotland, and our very own Whitbread engine.

Meet the curator- Michael Lea

June 17, 2009

Michael Lee
Name Michael Lea What is your speciality area? Music and musical instruments. It’s a very diverse area so covers a lot of ground from historical to contemporary aspects through to musical traditions from a variety of cultures.

Maccaferri plastic guitar

June 17, 2009

Michael Lee
As I mentioned this is another of my favourite things in the collection. It was bought by the museum from Maccaferri’s plastics company in the USA in the 1950s as an example of what you could do with plastic, and it doesn’t sound too bad as an instrument either.

The Traeger Pedal

June 10, 2009

Erika Taylor
Imagine, you're at the weekly pub trivia quiz, it's the final round and you need 2 points to win. Question 1. Which Australian Icon appears on the back of the Australian $20 note? a tough one! but some may know that it's the Reverend John Flynn, who started the world's first air ambulance service, The Royal Flying Doctors.

Meet the curator- Debbie Rudder

June 3, 2009

Debbie Rudder

My main research interests are: how our past use of energy informs present and future energy use; and the history and practice of innovation.

Matthew Boulton and the Imperial Bank Mint in St Petersburg

June 3, 2009

Debbie Rudder
At first glance, this drawing shows an old building holding a steam engine and other machinery. Then the eye focuses on the figures, men in formal eighteenth century Russian dress; perhaps they are there to provide scale, or to suggest that this is an important building holding important machinery.

Meet the curator- Campbell Bickerstaff

May 27, 2009

Campbell Bickerstaff

I am usually the one people come to when they need help with technology that is used to capture, store, transmit or receive information.

Spinning around – The Garrard 301

May 27, 2009

Campbell Bickerstaff
One of the reasons there is a paucity of ‘ultra fidelity’ components in the Museums collection is that their build quality is extraordinarily high and so they continue to be sought after by users and collectors.

Meet the curator – Geoff Barker

May 20, 2009

Geoff Barker

I specialise in nineteenth century Australian and Pacific photography and the links between science and photography.