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Recycled Brass Band exhibition a hit at Yarrabah

Ewen McPhee with Brad Higgins of Menmuny Museum during the re installation of the “Blow ‘Im Exhibition”.

Ewen McPhee with Brad Higgins of Menmuny Museum during the re installation of the “Blow ‘Im Exhibition”.

In mid July, MDOs Ewen McPhee and Dr Jo Wills worked with Bradley Higgins, archivist from Yarrabah’s Menmuny Museum, to install the “Blow ‘Im: The Yarrabah Brass Band Story” exhibition in time for the Yarrabah Band Festival.

In just over three days, the museum space was reinvigorated, whilst maintaining the consistency of original stories and exhibition rationale. Object cases were cleaned, moved and reinstalled. Graphic panels were re-hung. Some cases were relined with calico. Object supports were also made for an original euphonium used in the first band that was donated to the Museum A new object label was also produced to accompany the display.

National Indigenous Time article (Issue 323,  7 August 2013: pp.21-22) celebrates the Yarrabah Band Festival

National Indigenous Times article (Issue 323, 7 Aug 2013: pp.21-22) celebrates the Yarrabah Band Festival

Digital screens were installed to make Menmuny Museum’s pictorial collection more accessible to visitors, and showcase an interview with the exhibition’s original curator, Elverina Johnston. A descendant of the Kunganji tribe of the Yarrabah Aboriginal Community, Elverina curated “Blow ‘Im” in 2003. The exhibition comprises graphic text panels that explore the history of Yarrabah Brass bands as well as other Indigenous brass bands all around Queensland from 1901 to the 1970’s.

The Yarrabah Band Festival was put on by Queensland Music Festival and supported by Queensland Performing Arts. Check out the following link to find out how the project got started, and its importance to communities in the following short video clip on the ABC.


Every Museum has Words…

Every museum has words.  In text panels, in labels, in handouts, in multimedia presentations…  Recently museum workers came together for the 2012 CQ Museums Network Day to learn all about words in their museums. Read the rest of this entry

Mossman Shire Hall 75th Anniversary Exhibition

In June 1937, Mossman celebrated the opening of it’s new shire hall with an Opening Ball. Seventy five years later, Cairns Regional Council will celebrate the anniversary of this Queensland Heritage Register-listed building (and its refurbishment this year) with an old time dance and a small exhibition on 22 June 2012 .

Built as part of the Queensland Government Unemployment Relief Scheme during the 1930s, Mossmand Shire Hall was designed by notable north Queensland architectural firm, Hill and Taylor. Their work can be seen in a number of buildings in Mossman, and in many towns across the region.

In preparation for the exhibition, Council staff in Mossman have been busy talking to locals and gathering photographs, newspaper articles, dresses, awards and other Hall-related memorabilia. The material will be used to showcase the buildings history and community use. Exhibitions that draw on community artefacts, anecdotes and images are a great way of exploring the significance of heritage buildings.