Inside the Collection

Joyce Gittoes Ceramic Art

August 31, 2011

Anni Turnbull
I recently had the privilege to undertake a 20 day internship at the Powerhouse Museum under the supervision of curator, Paul Donnelly. I was given the task of documenting an acquisition consisting of a series of ceramic pieces by Joyce Gittoes (b.1915).

Science Underground:Synroc

August 26, 2011

Kerrie Dougherty
The disposal of nuclear waste has been a controversial issue for decades. Synroc is an innovative solution to dealing with the problem of the long term storage of nuclear wastes that contain radioactive isotopes with long half-lives.

Broken dreams and dioramas

August 26, 2011

Charles Pickett
A couple of media stories set me thinking about the image of museums. One (which you may well have come across) concerned a museum and its touring exhibition which have gained an extraordinary amount of press.

Science Underground: Exotic Theatre of the South Seas

August 23, 2011

Margaret Simpson
After working at this Museum for decades I still find it breathtaking uncovering the treasures we have buried away down in our vaults. An academic from New Zealand emailed me to have a look at a French children’s toy theatre, “La Pleine Mer” (The Open Sea).

Science Underground: mystery object

August 17, 2011

Debbie Rudder
This beautiful brass object is one of a nice selection of science and technology artefacts that visitors will see on our curator-led basement tours during Ultimo Science Festival. Can you identify it?

Science Underground: limelight burner

August 13, 2011

Debbie Rudder
Chemists have not seen much of their discourse become part of popular culture, but the symbol for water is a notable exception. In advertising speak, H2O has a high recognition factor. It has been adopted and adapted for a plethora of cool brand names, a few geeky jokes and a successful Australian TV show and spin-off movie.

Love Lace International Lace Award and Exhibition: creating the shadows

August 12, 2011

Anni Turnbull
When you walk through the Love Lace exhibition its apparent how important lighting is to the successful display of these works. The Museum electrician Peter Hermon says This was a unique exhibition to work on, we had more time to work on the lighting (and wiring) and the nature of the work was different, shadows were really important and the lighting needs more particular.

Winners and losers: the Venice Biennale pavilion

August 4, 2011

Charles Pickett
A far swag of the world’s most famous buildings are the result of design competitions – completed winners include Florence’s Duomo, the White House, the Paris Opera, the Westminster Houses of Parliament, the Reichstag (twice) and the Centre Pompidou.

What is plastic? a chemical controversy

August 3, 2011

Debbie Rudder
Bakelite is rightly famous as the first fully synthetic plastic (defined as an organic material that can be moulded under heat and/or pressure). Its name immortalises its inventor, Leo Baekeland. The Museum's bust of this balding moustachioed chemist and industrialist, made from a translucent red version of his phenol-formaldehyde resin, also celebrates his place in technological history.

Love Lace International Lace Award and Exhibition: an artist’s view

July 27, 2011

Anni Turnbull
A textile artist from the Cook Islands, Andrea Eimke has spent the last week installing her work in the Love Lace exhibition. With the title ‘Third Space II’ the work is made up of thirty five hanging panels of tapa (bark cloth), cotton gauze, interfacing, thread and soluble stabilizer.

Sketching the Museum

July 25, 2011

Erika Taylor
A special gem popped up in our google alerts this morning, we found out that the Museum had been visited by the Sydney Urbane Sketchers on the weekend! We contacted sketcher David Jack (you can check out his blog here) to find out a little bit more.