2015 Gallery and Museum Achievement Awards
University of the Sunshine Coast and Blue Sky View
East Coast Encounter
East Coast Encounter incorporates a three-year touring exhibition, publication and a DVD. It re-imagines James Cook’s 1770 Australian journey and its impact, shifting the focus from primarily a Eurocentric perspective to present a shared story, told in engaging ways by Australian Indigenous and non-Indigenous artists from multiple perspectives and in various media. East Coast Encounter was developed through a partnership between Dr Lisa Chandler from the University of the Sunshine Coast, and John Waldron, independent curator and gallery and museum consultant from Blue Sky View, based on an idea by local Sunshine Coast artist Peter Hudson. The exhibition features fourteen artists, three performers/writers, a DVD by Australian journalist Jeff McMullen, and a bark canoe constructed by local Gubbi Gubbi men. The entire East Coast Encounterexhibition has been subsequently acquired by the Australian National Maritime Museum for its national collection and the Cook 2020 program marking the 250-year anniversary of Cook’s voyage.
East Coast Encounter has been developed by the University of the Sunshine Coast and assisted by the Queensland Government through Arts Queensland and the Australian Government through the Ministry for the Arts Visions of Australia program.
Museum of Brisbane
Costumes from the Golden Age of Hollywood
Costumes from the Golden Age of Hollywood was an exhibition developed by Museum of Brisbane that offered a rare glimpse into a glamorous and romantic bygone era of filmmaking. The exhibition, featuring 69 garments, was drawn from the collection of Nicholas Inglis, a Brisbane resident with a personal family connection to Brisbane’s cinematic past. Costumes from the Golden Age of Hollywood was the first time that these costumes have been exhibited as a collection anywhere in the world. Museum of Brisbane used the collection to create a grand narrative about the era – the stars, the films, the genres, the designers, the importance of costumes, the end of the era and its enduring legacy. Each costume had its story displayed with it, as well as an original film still of the costume being worn on screen.
The Museum worked with textile conservator, Tess Evans, to have the garments prepared for the exhibition to showcase the collection at its best. Tess recently won Australian Conservator of the Year at the AICCM awards for her work on the project.
Pine Rivers Heritage Museum
Napoleon’s Last Gamble
Pine Rivers Heritage Museum’s project, Napoleon’s Last Gamble, consisted of an exhibition and a series of associated public programs commemorating the 200th anniversary of the Battle of Waterloo (on 18 June 1815) and the final downfall of France’s Emperor Napoleon. Displaying items of international significance such as original uniforms, equipment, relics and images, the exhibition explored the impact of the French Revolution, the rise to power of Napoleon and the years of conflict.
Adding Australian and local relevance, Napoleon’s Last Gamble included components dealing with the legacies of the Napoleonic wars in Australia, including the stories of veterans of this conflict who later served or settled in Australia. One of the key aims of the project was to develop long-term partnerships between the Museum and local historians and private collectors and collecting groups. A series of public programs included talks by the curator and collectors, school holiday workshops and a Regency Supper Dance.
Torres Strait Regional Authority, Gab Titui Cultural Centre
Evolution: Torres Strait Masks
The aim of Evolution: Torres Strait Masks was to highlight the continuing importance of these masks, their evolution from the past and influence on present day contemporary art forms. Masks are representational of ancestral, supernatural and/or totemic beings that form an important component in the traditional beliefs of Torres Strait Islanders. The exhibition takes the viewer on a journey from time immemorial when masks were used in ceremonial rituals involving art, theatre and dance. It tells of how these historic artefacts, now kept in national and international institutions, have inspired new works and how these are constantly developing and changing.
Irrespective of the impact of cultural desecration that post-colonialism had caused in the Torres Strait, the art of creating masks and choreographing new dances is part of a continuing cultural tradition.
Evolution: Torres Strait Masks was curated by the Gab Titui Operations and Exhibitions Manager and Gallery Officer, with the invaluable support of award-winning Badu Island artist, Alick Tipoti.