QVMAG’s International Museums Day focused
QVMAG General Manager Creative Arts and Cultural Services Tracy Puklowski outside the Inveresk Museum. Picture: Paul Scambler.
Jackson Worthington, QVMAG focused on inclusion, equality and diversity for International Museums Day, The Examiner, 17 May 2020
Behind closed doors staff at the Queen Victoria Museum and Art Gallery have been searching and sorting their collections.
In celebration of International Museum Day on Monday they have curated a series of objects which embody the theme of museums for equality, diversity and inclusion.
The pieces range from a collection of shells to visual art to a tent used by an iconic wilderness photographer.
General manager of creative arts and cultural services at QVMAG Tracy Puklowski said the theme is important to them due to the diversity of their collection.
“A big part of the path that we are on heading into the future is to make sure more of our stories are told for more of our communities,” she said.
“We are really wanting to work very closely in partnership with our community to make sure that more of Launceston’s stories are told.
“This theme is very much about what museums are all about these days.”
The museum’s senior curator of public history Jon Addison said the story of Lithuanian war immigrant and wilderness photographer Olegas Truchanas highlighted what it meant to be Tasmanian.
“We have to acknowledge the enormous impact of people like Truchanas and all the others who assisted him,” he said.
“We are also talking here about a wartime immigrant who became an integral part of the community.
“Despite not growing up here he became a key part of Tasmania’s human story.
“This gives us an insight into what makes Tasmania, Tasmania in terms of people and how the conservation movement has developed.”
He said the tent symbolised a physical connection to a man who defined the modern conservation movement.
Senior curator of visual art and design Ashleigh Watling said she chose a collection of Ricky Maynard prints because they provided a way for people to connect to the stories of Indigenous Australians.
The Saddened were the hearts of many men series explores the strength of Tasmanian Aboriginal people and their presence in the State.
“I think there has been a long era of misinformation and non inclusion of [the stories and voices of Indigenous Australians] around Australia,” Ms Watling said.
“Having works like this in our collection really gives us an opportunity to start including those stories.”
Ms Watling said she was excited to explore stories of inclusion further when the museum can reopen in June.
The final item chosen to represent the themes of International Museum Day was a collection of shells and other natural history specimens left to the museum by Mary Lodder.