Culture Buff

James Cook items, Treasures Gallery, NLA, Canberra

11 February 2017

9:00 AM

11 February 2017

9:00 AM

If you missed the 100 Objects from the British Museum on display at the Museum of Australia, don’t despair, there is plenty to see in Canberra’s wonderful galleries and museums: Versailles: Treasures from the Palace at the NGA, The Popular Pet Show at the Portrait Gallery, Freewheeling: Cycling in Australia at the MoA and at the National Library of Australia the excellent Treasures Gallery, permanently on show but with significant changes every few months. The gallery lives up to its name; packed with treasures, beautifully displayed.The role of this jewel of a gallery is to highlight the extraordinary holdings of the NLA. Although the Library’s very handsome building was commissioned and opened by PM Robert Menzies, the collection actually began in 1901. The collection is not confined to books; indeed it includes thousands of objects, most with significant origins. The display highlights these extraordinary, often moving, holdings, from maps and rare books to manuscripts, photographs, paintings in oil and watercolour. The journal James Cook wrote on the Endeavour voyage, the journals Burke and Wills kept in their final hours, the original manuscript of Waltzing Matilda, the hand-carved bookcase of Dorothea Mackellar, the famous Gallipoli Letter written by Keith Murdoch, the mixed media journals of John Olsen (1960-2015); each are treasurers in their own right. The Treasures Gallery is a key part of our national memory-bank.

Got something to add? Join the discussion and comment below.

You might disagree with half of it, but you’ll enjoy reading all of it. Try your first 10 weeks for just $10


Show comments
Close