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Canning Stock Route exhibition sets new record for visitors to National Museum

27 DECEMBER 2010

Yiwarra Kuju: The Canning Stock Route, a remarkable collection of paintings and stories which reclaims the Aboriginal history of the world's longest stock route through the deserts of Western Australia, has set a new record for a temporary exhibition at the National Museum of Australia.

More than 86,500 people have visited the exhibition since it opened in July 2010, exceeding the number of visitors to Mars and Beyond which went on display shortly after the National Museum opened in 2001.

'There has been a great buzz around Yiwarra Kuju: The Canning Stock Route since it opened. I think visitors have responded to the unique quality of this exhibition – it is historical yet up-to-the-minute; it is vibrant and deep, above all it brings us closer to people and their stories,' said Andrew Sayers, Director of the National Museum of Australia.

'I would encourage everyone to grab the opportunity to experience this free exhibition before it closes on Australia Day,' said Mr Sayers.

The Canning Stock Route, an ultimately unsuccessful cattle track stretching from Halls Creek to Wiluna, is usually presented as a white man's story. The exhibition Yiwarra Kuju: The Canning Stock Route restates the Aboriginal history of the stock route by telling the story through Aboriginal eyes and voices.

The art and objects were produced by the Canning Stock Route Project, a four year program developed by FORM, an independent arts organisation based in Perth, which involved artists, traditional custodians and emerging Aboriginal curators and filmmakers.

Yiwarra Kuju: The Canning Stock Route is a free exhibition which features 127 paintings, cultural objects, documents and a remarkable new media work which traces the Canning Stock Route with touch-screen access to historical and contemporary detail, paintings and cultural works and a rich oral and visual record.

For interviews, images and more information please contact Dennis Grant on 02 6208 5351, 0409 916 481 or media@nma.gov.au