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Sol LeWitt left behind detailed instructions that today enable galleries to realise his art for exhibition. Chris Beckett

The digital future of our stuff: approach with caution

Just as we have become accustomed to two worlds of consumption – online and “location-based” retail (what we used to call “shops”) – the concept of museums and galleries as solely physical repositories…
The naming and claiming of public space is a highly political act. Joe Castro/AAP Image

Amphlett Lane puts rock legacy back on the map, literally

When Chrissy Amphlett, lead singer of the iconic Australian rock group The Divinyls, passed away as a result of breast cancer in April last year, it was only a matter of weeks before the question of how…
Indigenous groups are concerned about proposed changes to the process for determining heritage sites in Western Australia, including the location of the Nyoongar Tent embassy. Allen Stewart/Newspix

Frustration rises over changes to the WA Aboriginal Heritage Act

In June, the Western Australian Government released draft amendments to the Aboriginal Heritage Act 1972. This is the legislation that determines what qualifies for heritage protection in the state – and…
We hear a great deal about China’s future – but how is it treating its past? Sangzhutse Fortress in Shigatse, Tibet – after restoration work. Photo: Tongji University

China’s future is bright, and that includes conserving the past

For most Australians, mention of China probably does not evoke preserved buildings and landscapes in the way the English countryside does or the Italian centro storico. But a new exhibition, Envisioning…
The National Museum of Australia is one of several organisations whose back-room operations will be merged. Lukas Coch/AAP IMAGE

Merging ‘back-office functions’ is bad news for the museum sector

After a sustained period of slimming down under the previous Labor government it looks like the GLAM sector (Galleries, Libraries, Archives and Museums) has still not achieved its target weight. Even before…
The historic homestead Wallarah House burnt to the ground in the recent NSW bushfires. AAP/Dean Lewins

When our cultural heritage goes up in smoke

This month’s New South Wales fire emergency has again focused attention on the threat to life and property caused by fire. With thousands of hectares of bushland already burnt out, the impact on natural…
Can a booming coal industry and a Heritage-Listed reef co-exist? AAP/Dave Hunt

The Great Barrier Reef at a crossroads

Last Friday the World Heritage Centre and the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) released a report on the state of the Great Barrier Reef, the world’s largest World Heritage Property…
The Great Barrier Reef … in danger of a downgrade. Flickr/eutrophication&hypoxia

UNESCO’s Great Barrier Reef report: experts respond

A damning UNESCO report has criticised management of the Great Barrier Reef and warned that the area could be downgraded…
Submerged mysteries: only 14 of Australia’s almost 2,800 shipwrecks have been properly surveyed and excavated. Flickr/miamism

Sunken history: how to study and care for shipwrecks

The study and preservation of Australia’s neglected and decaying historic shipwrecks stands to leap in sophistication through a new multi-disciplinary project. Bringing in expertise from behavioural archaeology…
Australia has the world’s oldest continuously worked mine site. AAP

The Australian history we don’t know

There has been a massive revival of interest in Australian history in the last decade. Under Prime Minister John Howard, Australia’s military history, particularly the ANZACs, became little short of a…
The Tarkine is our largest cool temperate rainforest, but will that be enough to save it? Flickr/leonrw

Cynical politics condemns our national heritage

Once a place is heritage listed, it’s protected, right? Wrong. Politics and a flawed statutory regime are undermining the independence of the listing system, and threatening Australia’s national treasures…

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