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National Museum of Australia

Collection Explorer



  • Sydney 2000 Olympic Games collection(14)

    Large scale Kewpie doll performance prop comprising several parts, used in Love Is In the Air segment of Closing Ceremony of Sydney 2000 Olympic Games
    Shoe tricycle with striped fur, used during Closing Ceremony of Sydney 2000 Olympic Games, in musical segment Drag Queens on Bikes
    Wooden operating crutch of large scale Kewpie doll performance prop
    Head and torso of large scale Kewpie doll performance prop

    The Sydney 2000 Olympic Games Collection is comprised of 4 objects from the Sydney 2000 Olympic Games.

    The Sydney 2000 Olympics were held from the 13th September - 1 October, and were the biggest sporting event ever staged in Australia. The Games were attended by over one million spectators and watched on television by billions of people around the world. They were considered a huge success both nationally and internationally, with many commentators expressing pride in the way that Australia's image had been projected locally and globally, particularly during the Opening and Closing Ceremonies. Australia's athletes also performed above expectation. The Games also tapped into Australia's process of Reconciliation between indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians, which had culminated in massive marches supportive of the Council for Aboriginal Reconciliation in May 2000. However, the Games did not pass off without controversy, particularly over resistance to the Bondi Volleyball Stadium, and protests at the World Economic Forum's Asia-Pacific Economic Summit held in Melbourne between 11-13 September, which was staged just prior to the Games.

  • Maningrida Arts and Crafts 02/09/1974 collection(32)

    Painting depicts the rectangle hollow log used as a gong in the Yabadorowa ceremony
    Painting depicts
    Painting depicts the hollow log gongs used in the gong ceremony and
    Painting depicts the hollow logs used in the gong ceremony and
  • Josef Lebovic Gallery collection no. 1(7553)

    The Centenary Tower, Mt Gambier, SA
    The Fairy Bridget and the Mermaid.
    R.C. Presbytery, Bathurst
    Gracedale, Lorne, Vic
  • Nettie McColive collection(189)


    Needlework has been an important creative outlet for women throughout Australian history. This work has often been denigrated due to the (gendered) divide between high and low culture which regards domestic work as trivial, feminine and unworthy of the title "Art". A reassessment of history informed by womens' history and feminism has led to domestic needlework being acknowledged as more than simply functional labour. The social role of this type of work is now better appreciated making it a vital aspect of domestic material culture.

    This collection consists of objects relating to the life of Minetta (Nettie) McColive (nee Huppatz). Mrs McColive's quilts form the centre piece of the collection. Three of these were made in the 1930's, the Farm Life Quilt, Wildflowers Quilt and the International Quilt. Also featured in the collection are certificates, photographs and d'oyleys. This collection helps to document issues such as women in rural Australia, quilting and needlework, education in the outback, community or commemorative quilting, shows and competitions.

    Mrs McColive's work has been the subject of considerable interest both in South Australia as well as in the general quilting community. Her work is featured in two books, Jennifer Isaac's The Gentle Arts and Margaret Rolfe's Patchwork Quilts in Australia. Her work has also featured in exhibitions such as the Quilt Australia '88 exhibition as well as an exhibition held in Prospect showcasing the work of local artists.

  • David Westcott collection no. 6(22)

    Second World War Prisoner of War Banknote
    Embroidered silk postcard from World War One

    The Bradman, World War One and agricultural collection (David Westcott) consists of five World War One silk postcards; six 19th century agricultural show prizes; eight "Japanese invasion money" notes from the Netherlands East Indies; one book on Donald Bradman (1948).

    With the separation caused by overseas service during World War One, postcards became an important way to reduce the pain of absence for those at the front and those at home. Silk postcards, initially hand-made in France but later mass produced, were a popular souvenir to send home. The Japanese Government authorised various printings of so-called "invasion money" to equate approximately with each occupied country's pre-war currency. After Japanese forces were defeated, the Allies destroyed all known "invasion money" issues, but many examples were souvenired by servicemen. The agricultural show certificates provide and important link into the agricultural economy of Federation-era Australia (in particularly the Victoria-New South Wales border). The book on Donald Bradman was written by journalist and selector AG Moyes. Moyes was a State selector who helped bring Bradman into top class cricket. He was clearly a great admirer of Bradman, as well as a friend. The book is an example of the development of the Bradman legend at a key moment in "The Don's" career.

  • Lew Parlette collection no. 2(11)

    Elongate oval red pigmented wooden shield [Lyurulyuru Dreaming], painted by Dinny Nolan Tjampitjinpa, 1972
    Chisel, made by Paddy Tjangala, 1972
    Elongate oval red pigmented wooden shield '[Old Man Dreaming]', painted by Uta Uta Tjangala, 1972
    Man Dreaming (dingari), painted by Anatjarri Tjakamarra, 1972
  • Colledge Family collection(296)

    GRANVILLE SHOW 1952, blue felt show pennant with gold-coloured block text
    Royal Agricultural Society of NSW
    The Royal Agricultural Society Victoria,
    Black velvet horse riding helmet
  • Timothy Millett collection(314)

    Convict love token from John Roulston, 1846
    Convict love token from G.G., Jan 10th, 1820
    Convict love token from Thomas Barnes, born October 8 1805
    Convict love token from E.H. Elliot

    The Timothy Millett collection comprises 307 convict love tokens dating from 1762 to 1856, and seven contemporary documents relating to the criminal justice system including: recommendations to commute the death sentences of Hester Sampson and Thomas Hayes to life transportation; a calendar of prisoners awaiting trial in the goals of Durham, Newcastle and Northumberland; a request to the Middlesex assizes for rewards to be paid; a printed copy of George Skene's last speech prior to execution; a printed broadside listing prisoners in Dorchester jail awaiting transportation; and a 60 page handwritten account of the life of Thomas Jones, who was transported twice and finally hanged at Winchester Prison in 1856.

    Convict love tokens, typically made from smoothed-down coins and engraved or stippled with a message, derive from traditional sailors' farewells. The production of these 'leaden hearts' rose as criminal indictments increased in Britain, with the majority produced during the 1820s and 1830s. As mementos made by or for convicts facing transportation (or death) to leave behind for their loved ones, the tokens provide a poignant, personal insight into the transportation system.