Small museum inspiration at Museums Australia conference

#ma2015syd conference blog

Refreshing ideas

Those working in small museums and remote locations frequently inspire those working in the larger institutions. Remember, at the 2009 Museums Australia’s national conference, the Abbey Museum of Art and Archaeology’s Edith Cuffe, who livened us up by showing us how to create something out of nothing with an annual medieval dress-up festival in the unlikely State of Queensland? 

The national conference has also lifted the veil on issues of great important deserving closer attention by the sector at large. Remember the Griffith Review’s Julianne Schulz at the 2014 national conference when she walked us through the difficulties of locating culturally significant material in small museums and historical societies?     

Speakers and topics

The regional, remote and  community museums day at this year’s Museums Australia national conference offers rich pickings for those wanting to freshen up there ideas and connect with like-minded colleagues. Sally Watterson, Museum Advisor, Wollongong City Council, will reflect on regional spaces in a changing world. Sally recently completed project coordination for the move of the Olley house interiors to Tweed Regional Gallery and the Margaret Olley Art Centre, an exercise akin to moving Francis Bacon’s studio in South Kensington to Dublin.

Deirdre Kiorgaard from the National Library will talk about the role of Trove in exposing museum collections big and small. There have been some interesting developments at the National Library in harvesting information from potential partners and sources that were previously excluded, so this is a session not to miss. Simone Rosenbaurer will speak about her small Museums Project 

Other topics to be covered during the day include travelling exhibitions, interpreting history and buildings, serving genealogical interests, getting rid of material, shopping online to build collections, reframing university museums, financial and environmentally sustainable solutions for regional museums, myth-busting, storytelling, planning and using food. 

Get away from your daily grind, join us at the national conference and experience some of the other attractions of Sydney at the end of May. We invite you to join us for the NSW Branch AGM. And we look forward to meeting up with chapter representatives attending the conference.      

Further details

Museums Australia National Conference, Sydney, 21-25 May 2015,

For more information and to register visit

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