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Shield (back), unknown maker
Nowra region, New South Wales, early 1860s
Oc.1808. British Museum catalogue entry
Image courtesy British Museum


Encounters is a collaborative project between the National Museum of Australia, the British Museum, the Australian National University and a range of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities across Australia.

Curators, scholars, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities and artists are creating two related exhibitions featuring highlights from the extraordinary collection of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander objects held in the British Museum.

In 2015 the two exhibitions will open on opposite sides of the world: at the British Museum in London in April 2015 and at the National Museum in Canberra in November 2015.

The exhibition at the National Museum will highlight the early encounters that occurred between Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and British explorers and settlers.

The exhibition will be a catalyst for acknowledging our entwined histories, and will help Australians to appreciate the continuing legacies of these encounters.

This will be the first time much of this material has been seen in Australia since its original collection.