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Director's message

WARNING: Visitors should be aware that this website includes images and names of deceased people that may cause sadness or distress to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.

Message from the Director of the National Museum of Australia

Welcome. On behalf of the National Museum of Australia, I would like to acknowledge the Ngunnawal and Ngambri peoples of the Australian Capital Territory on whose land our institution is located. I also acknowledge and thank Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and communities around the country for working with us to share their stories.

In 2012, the National Museum of Australia will undergo significant change. A renovation and expansion of our current café area in the Great Hall will create a waterfront dining experience for visitors and free up the Great Hall to become a Large Object Display zone. This will present us with the opportunity to display some of the larger items within the Museum’s collections such as the 1936 Percival Gull monoplane and the 1925 Fowler Steam Road Locomotive. Our working theme for this zone is ‘Travelling through Country’, and the space will encourage visitors to journey through the objects, and then enter the galleries.

Concept development for the renovation and refreshment of the Gallery of First Australians is also underway. Although there have been many small changes in the Gallery, this is the first time that curators will be able to revisit the overall vision for the Gallery of First Australians since the Museum opened in 2001. We are excited about representing the contemporary experiences of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians within the revamped galleries. The Museum has also been busy creating more opportunities for digital interface through our website. We have upgraded the website and are working to upload content from our exhibitions, research and collections for greater access by our national and international audience.

This year also sees a changing of the guard with the appointment of Alisa Duff as the new Head of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Program. Alisa takes over from Michael Pickering, who has moved to head up the new Curatorial and Research unit. I am delighted to welcome Alisa back to the National Museum again.

We’re excited about these developments and the progress that the National Museum of Australia is making, and invite you to come with us on this journey.

Andrew Sayers AM