Research Staff

The Powerhouse staff are involved in research that covers the breadth of our extraordinary collection, curatorial practice, education and public programming, conservation, and museum practice. Each of these areas may involve research into digital and media related aspects of material culture and the museum context. We actively publish our research in a wide variety of publications, conferences and other forums.

The Powerhouse researchers may be contacted via general enquiries.

Chloe Appleby

Assistant Curator

Portrait, Chloe Appleby, Assistant Curator.Chloe holds a Master of Museum and Heritage Studies (University of Sydney) and a Bachelor of Arts majoring in Ancient History (Macquarie University). She has a wide range of research areas including Australian studio ceramics and glass, ancient and medieval practices and mythologies, and the development and influence of animation, film, digital art and video games. Chloe is particularly interested in digital technologies and culture and their direct influence on contemporary lifestyles and social interactions. She is passionate about researching and creating sustainable and impactful collections, narratives and spaces in the museum industry.

Campbell Bickerstaff


Portrait, Campbell Bickerstaff, Curator.Campbell’s research areas and expertise include technology and design as applied to information and communications technologies. He is very interested in the plastic arts and industrial design nexus and how it may help forge a phenomenological interaction with products. Campbell’s research is also focused on the history of audio recording, reproduction and consumption and the links between culture, audio genres, technology and culture. His particular emphasis is on examining the drivers and systems linked to the cultural activities, aesthetics and technology of audio.

Alysha Buss

Assistant Curator

Portrait, Alysha Buss, Assistant Curator.Alysha’s background is in museum studies, heritage studies, archaeology, art history and anthropology. Her areas of research have included photography, toys and childhood, metal craft, ceramics and digital activation of collections and historic spaces. Alysha is interested in interpretation and creating meaningful visitor experiences.

Keinton Butler

Senior Curator 

Portrait, Keinton Butler, Senior Curator.

Keinton is a design curator and industrial designer with international experience delivering socially engaged exhibitions and public programs. Keinton’s research aims to promote understanding and appreciation of design and architecture through communication methods and display techniques outside of the conventional framework, enlisting platforms that encourage interaction and accommodate the changing needs of the museum audience. Working within a broad definition of design, Keinton’s research areas have focused on progressive interpretive methods, including online curating and mobile technology. Keinton is particularly interested in the way digital technology continues to simultaneously reflect and influence contemporary curatorial practice.

See Keinton’s publications on Google Scholar.

Matthew Connell

Director Curatorial, Collections and Programs

Portrait, Matthew Connell, Principal Curator.Matthew’s research and curatorial interests include computing history, mathematics history, media art and design, interaction design, STEM education and learning, and curatorship. He is currently involved in research projects relating to post-disciplinary curatorship, curating art/science collaborations, interactive immersive systems, audience engagement and learning in maker spaces, and the industrial and cultural implications of digital manufacturing technologies. Matthew is also Adjunct Professor, iCinema Centre for Interactive Cinema Research, University of New South Wales.

See Matthew’s publications on Google Scholar.

Eva Czernis-Ryl


Portrait, Eva Czernis-Ryl, CuratorEva is an arts and design historian and curator with extensive experience in research and interpretation of historical and contemporary ideas, themes and objects, and in concept and content development of exhibitions. Revealing connections between the allied fields of fine and applied arts, design, craft and technology is a focus area. Eva’s specialist research interests encompass decorative arts and design from the 18th century to now, history of collecting and display, contemporary collecting and curating and craft theory. She has published in areas ranging from European ceramics and Australian colonial gold and silver to Italian design and Australian contemporary glass, metalwork, textiles and jewellery.

See Eva’s publications on Google Scholar.

Katie Dyer

Senior Curator, Contemporary

Portrait, Katie Dyer, Senior Curator.Katie is a contemporary art curator with extensive experience working with established and emerging artists and historical collections. Her focus has been on working with national and international visual art, moving image, performance and art in the public realm. Her research areas focus on creative practice as a response to our contemporary conditions, interdisciplinary collaboration and the re-imagined museum. Katie is also examining how art–science can generate new modes of transdisciplinary knowledge and unique forms of public engagement.

Nina Earl

Assistant Curator

Portrait, Nina Earle, Assistant Curator.

Nina holds a Master’s of Science Communication and has extensive experience in STEM education and community outreach. Her research background is in geological mapping and communicating scientific research to a broad range of public audiences. She has a strong research interest in new materials and construction techniques, with a focus on sustainable design and development. Nina is interested in how audiences relate to and respond to museum collections in an increasingly digital culture.

Angelique Hutchison


Portrait, Angelique Hutchison, Curator.Angelique’s research experience at the Powerhouse includes: historical and contemporary innovation in Australian industry; design, innovation and commercialisation processes; and contemporary Australian product design. More broadly her interest is in exploring the connections between science, technology, design and culture, with a strong interest in sustainability. Angelique has qualifications in engineering (materials), science communication and environmental studies.

See Angelique’s publications on Google Scholar.

Dr Andrew Jacob


Portrait, Andrew Jacob, Curator.Andrew’s research interests include everything astronomical and astrophysical and their related histories. He has a particular interest in Australian astronomical history including the role of Sydney Observatory. His PhD project used the Sydney University Stellar Interferometer, resulting in a contribution to the calibration of the cosmological distance scale. Andrew has been involved with research on Sydney Observatory’s role in the Astrographic Catalogue and Carte du Ciel projects for the new East Dome. Future work will focus on the Observatory’s exhibition to incorporate the history of Australian radio astronomy and the contributions of amateur astronomers.

See Andrew’s publications on Google Scholar.

Glynis Jones


Portrait, Glynis Jones, Curator.Glynis’s research interests focus on fashion and dress and include Australian colonial to contemporary designer fashion, subcultural and alternative style, millinery, dress and identity, Australian manufacturers including Berlei and Speedo, the modest fashion industry, fashion and sustainability, performance costume from the Sydney LGBT Mardi Gras and the designer archives of Jenny Kee, Linda Jackson and Collette Dinnigan. Glynis has curated exhibitions, published and lectured on numerous areas relating to dress including the history of Australian Fashion Week, faith and fashion, alternative dress, Australian underwear manufacturers, Australian colonial dress and the work of Jenny Kee, Linda Jackson and Collette Dinnigan.

Lily Katakouzinos

Head of Programs 

Portrait, Lily Katakouzinos, Head of Programs.With a background in fine arts, art education and public programming, Lily’s research interests are informed by her commitment to making museums accessible, dynamic, vibrant and fun learning spaces for people of all ages and socio-economic backgrounds. She is passionate about developing programs with a fresh approach which can inspire and motivate younger audiences whilst maintaining a strong sense of intellectual integrity. Lily’s current research interests centre around how museums can effectively and meaningfully engage with children with a particular focus on children aged 0-5.

Professor Pedram Khosronejad


Dr Pedram Khosronejad, Curator

Pedram is a socio-cultural and visual anthropologist of Iran, the Persianate societies, and the Middle East more broadly. His research, teachings and publications are multidisciplinary and cover a range of research areas including late nineteenth and early twentieth century Persian art and material culture, photography, and traditional crafts. He is well-known internationally for his innovative research on photography of African slavery in Qajar era Iran (1850-1925). Pedram’s current research project in Australia is on Dr. H. E. Wulff’s collection assembled between 1936 and 1941 documenting the traditional art, craft, science and technology of Persia.

See Pedram’s publications on Google Scholar.

Min-Jung Kim


Portrait, Min-Jung Kim, Curator.Min-Jung’s formal education includes Cultural Anthropology, Asian Art History, Museum Studies and Cultural Studies with special interests in material cultures and interdisciplinary interpretation for museum exhibits. Min-Jung has published and lectured widely on Korea’s buncheong ware, textiles and costumes from the Korea’s Joseon dynasty(1392-1910), Korean metal crafts, Chinese toggles, Korean contemporary jewellery, Japanese fashion and Museum Studies.

Dr Deborah Lawler-Dormer

Research Manager

Portrait, >Dr Deborah Lawler-Dormer, Research ManagerDeborah’s research expertise is in transdisciplinary art, science and technology projects. Her current research is on curatorial methodologies informed by posthumanist, feminist and new materialist thinking. Through her doctoral research practice, she developed a biomimetic avatar in collaboration with the Centre for Animate Technologies and explored biomimesis through curating an international exhibition, a virtual reality environment and an interactive installation. She has also investigated photographic, media art and film practices. Deborah is interested in deep collaborative research projects between the museum, industry and the tertiary sector.

See Deborah’s publications on Google Scholar.

Roger Leong

Senior Curator

Portrait, Roger Leong, Senior Curator.Roger’s research interests focus on fashion and include Regency dress, Art Deco style, contemporary millinery and footwear including sneakers, Japanese fashion, 1980s power-dressing, men’s dress, prestige dressmakers and ready-to-wear designers in Australia, fashionable black, fashion and dance, and lace in fashion. His curatorial and publication practice have extended his research to include Ballets Russes costumes and designs, the Arts and Crafts movement, English embroidery and contemporary Australian artists including Rick Amor, Peter Churcher, eX de Medici and others. Roger has curated exhibitions, published and lectured on numerous areas relating to fashionable dress from the nineteenth century to the present.

See Roger’s publications on Google Scholar.

Peter Mahony

Manager, Education and Digital Learning

Portrait, Peter Mahony, Education & Digital Learning Manager.Peter’s research focus is on exploring ways that a museum can offer authentic and deep learning experiences, and exploit the Museum’s collection for daily value for school communities. Programs and materials structure and scaffold collection access and object-based research processes and techniques. Specific community of practice partnerships between the Museum and school communities represent platforms for action-research experiments, the results of which inform the museum’s overall Learning offer.

Damian McDonald


Portrait, Damian McDonald, Curator.Damian’s principal research areas are firearms and edged weapons, and how they are influenced by, and influence culture, as well as their design. He is interested in health and medicine, particularly the history of the material culture of the discipline, and the ways society’s notions around health and medicine change under the continuing advances in this area. His interests also include music and musical instruments, particularly rock music and the Australian underground music scene, subcultures of the 1970s and 80s and their influences on contemporary youth culture, and the material culture of computer technology.

See Damian’s publications on Google Scholar.

Dr Sarah Reeves

Assistant Curator

Portrait, Sarah Reeves, Assistant Curator.Sarah’s research interests cover all areas of science, but with a particular focus on astronomy. In her PhD Sarah studied the growth and evolution of galaxies, and was part of a project called FLASH which aims to map the evolution of gas in galaxies back to when the Universe was half its current age (8 billion years ago). Sarah is interested in the public perception and understanding of science (and scientists), including issues such as science/pseudoscience, the scientific method, and the role of pure research. She is passionate about inspiring people about science and is interested in learning more about the role that museums play in this process.


Kristina Stankovski


Kristina Stankovski, curator

Kristina is a curator with a diverse realm of international experience, having delivered numerous exhibitions and public programs in Australia and the UK over the course of her career. Her research interests focus on contemporary fashion and dress, sustainability, design and museology. She has curated exhibitions on tartan, knitwear and leading fashion designers, and published and lectured on areas of fashion history. Kristina holds a Master of Arts in Fashion (University of the Arts, London), a Graduate Diploma in Museum Studies (Sydney) and a Bachelor of Arts in Anthropology (Sydney).

Dr Jacqui Strecker

Head of Curatorial

Portrait, Dr Jacqui Strecker, Head of Curatorial.Jacqui has published and lectured widely across a range of research areas including contemporary culture, early twentieth century design and decorative arts and Australian history. She is regarded internationally for her work as a curator and art historian with a specialised knowledge of modernist avant-gardes in Germany. Jacqui’s current research interests include provenance research in relation to art looted during WWII and the emergence of international exhibitions of science, industry and applied arts in the late nineteenth century.
Image credit: Daniel Boud

See Jacqui’s publications on Google Scholar.

Vanessa Thorne

Assistant Curator

Portrait, Vanessa Thorne, Assistant Curator.Vanessa’s background is in the humanities, education and museum studies. She has wide-ranging interests in the work of Australian applied arts designers, material culture related to social change, Australia’s migration history and fashion and dress. Past historical research has included the history of the Jewish Scout movement in Sydney from 1908 to the present. Vanessa is also interested in the creation of accessible cultural experiences.

Anni Turnbull


Anni’s research areas and expertise include the social history of Sydney and NSW looking at social change and migration, environment, sport, diversity, health and significant sites of Sydney in particular the Sydney Harbour Bridge. Anni aims to incorporate people’s stories in Museum and Library collections and make them accessible through oral and video histories, exhibitions, web stories and podcasts. Her current research project is the Australian Culinary Archive, charting Australian’s changing taste buds through chefs and other culinary influencers from Margaret Fulton onwards.