Annette Kellerman's successes in a number of fields are extraordinary. Born in Sydney in 1886, she became an international celebrity as an endurance swimmer, a highly paid entertainer of the vaudeville stage and a star of American silent films. She played a key role in popularising the modern one-piece swimsuit for women, became a successful businesswoman and wrote self-help books about health, beauty and exercise.
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Frocks may seem rather innocuous but dress was essential in the creation of colonial Australia. In the 19th century, appropriate attire was a marker of respectability and an expression of status, wealth and beliefs.
One of the greatest pleasures when developing a museum exhibition is collaborating with a breadth of highly talented creatives. In the case of Collette Dinnigan: Unlaced, Kat Bond and Fil Bartkowiak in our design team collaborated with Stewart Walton, an artist, illustrator and furniture designer based in England to create our paper doll making activity space.
Iconic fashion designer Collette Dinnigan has been creating beautiful clothing for more than 25 years.
We've amassed some beards in our collection! Curator, Rebecca Evans, takes us through her favourites. 1. Christmas card by Dahl and Geoffrey Collings This card (at top) features a cartoon of a giant, a representation of iconic Australian actor Chips Rafferty, sitting on a stool having his huge beard combed by a tiny female figure, Quentin Rafferty.
From the mid 19th century, wallpapers used in Australia had predominantly been imported from Britain, but also from France, Canada and America. In 1959, Florence Broadhurst decided to buck the trend.
Japanese Folds (16 May-21 June 2015) is a playful exhibition showing contemporary fashion items and decorative arts from the Museum’s collection centred on the Japanese practice of folding. The exhibition provides an insight into the folding design concept with a focus on the way contemporary Japanese designers have adapted and incorporated traditional folding practices into their work.
This rather majestic black and white photographic portrait of Australian artist, designer and photographer Dahl Collings (Dulcie May Wilmott 1910-1988) was shot by her husband Geoffrey Collings (1905-2000) during a trip to Stonehenge around 1936.
On 29 November 2014, the Museum opened 'RECOLLECT: Shoes' – a new exhibition inspired by the idea of visible display storage. Comprising more than 800 shoes dating from the 1500s to now, visitors can see everything from the first pair of elastic sided boots in the world made for Queen Victoria in 1837 to designer names like Louboutin, Yves Saint Laurent and Lacroix.
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.
How can you prove the alcohol content of your whisky, brandy or gin? This question has long been of interest to distillers, excise collectors, publicans and serious drinkers. This intriguing and inventive box of calibrated glass bubbles provides one answer.
With thousands of sailors in Sydney this week for the International Fleet Review, celebrating 100 years since the Australian Navy sailed into Sydney Harbour in 1913, I thought I'd write about children's sailor suits.