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The National Museum of Australia holds a rich and diverse collection of Australian historical material in trust for the nation. People's interaction with the environment is one of our three core collecting areas. Here, you will find object and collection information developed by the People and Environment program.

Recent acquisitions

Aunty Ivy 'Life. Be in it' collection.
Aunty Ivy ‘Life. Be in it’ posters
Material relating to gardening expert Ivy Lovric who inspired 'Aunty Ivy'.

Hubert Opperman's beret
Worn by ‘Oppy’ throughout his life as a tribute to the French for their generous support.
Part of the 1866 Melbourne Cup.
1866 Melbourne Cup
The earliest known Melbourne Cup in its original state.

Collection reflections

Writers and artists look closely at our collections to produce essays and artworks that suggest new ways of understanding Australia, other species, and ourselves.

Sugarbag Dreaming (detail) by Jimmy Wululu bark painting
Sugarbag bark paintings
Natasha Fijn's essay on sugarbag bark paintings.
Canola crop
Genetically modified food and farming
Bethaney Turner’s essay on GM canola seed and one farmer’s concerns.

Collection interactives

Flemington on Cup Day

Flemington on Cup Day

Explore the workings and wonders of Flemington, Australia's largest racecourse, on Melbourne Cup Day. See how fashions have changed over the years, hear about broadcasting from veteran race caller Greg Miles, see a parade of champion horses and check out some of the objects on show in our Landmarks gallery.

Launch the Flemington on Cup Day interactive

Read more about Flemington in Landmarks

Exploring the world at Port Macquarie

A screenshot image of the 'Exploring the world at Port Macquarie' multimedia interactive.

Port Macquarie, on the central coast of New South Wales, has inspired scientific and historical inquiry for generations. Learn how artist Annabella Innes, amateur astronomer William Macdonnell and agriculturalist Thomas Dick recorded and responded to landscapes, plants, animals and people in the area.

Launch the Port Macquarie interactive

More about Port Macquarie in Landmarks

European voyages to the Australian continent

European voyages to the Australian continent

Explore various journeys to the Australian continent through themes of trade, navigation, science and empire. Learn more about the voyages and how the objects carried by different voyagers were made, used or conserved.

Launch the Banks' Florilegium Flash interactive
(Flash 9 compatible – download Flash)

Launch the Voyaging with a needle Flash interactive
(Flash 9 compatible – download Flash)

View the European voyages to the Australian continent HTML website