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Sound and vision

Sound and vision

Is cycling normal?

Curator and cyclist Daniel Oakman explores the history of the bicycle and the resurgence of cycling in Australia and across the world.

'Is cycling normal? The past, present and future of the bicycle in Australia'

Australians dream of speed

Collage of cycling photos

Seminar by Professor Angelina Russo, University of Canberra and Dr Steven Fleming, University of Tasmania

Can you imagine a city where the car isn’t the dominant mode of transport?

Listen to a challenging talk about how to reimagine our cities in ways that use bicycles to make them convenient, inclusive, efficient and fast!

Audio, images and transcript of Australians dream of speed

Sir Hubert Opperman

Printed colour poster with an illustration of a man riding a bicycle. Various news clippings and a map detailed in red form a backdrop. Text at the top reads 'MALVERN STAR/THE CYCLE OF OPPERMAN'. Text at the bottom reads 'Famed the World Over'.
'Malvern Star: the cycle of Opperman' advertising poster, 1934. National Museum of Australia.

Curator Daniel Oakman reflects on why the man known as 'Oppy' became a national hero, and how his cycling feats transformed popular understandings of human endurance.

audio_w15 'The Human Motor: Sir Hubert Opperman and endurance cycling in Australia'

Ernie Old

Curator Carol Cooper talks about Ernie Old and the Malvern Star bicycle in the National Museum's collection.

audio_w15 'Treasure trove: Ernie Old's bike on the 666 ABC Canberra website

The Spokesman cycling video

A short film portrait of James Macdonald, an enigmatic collector of bicycles who hopes the cycles he has collected from each developmental epoch will be preserved for future generations. Film by Dean Saffron.

Video icon 'The Spokesman' film on The Documentary Network website


People and the Environment

Cycling in Australia is part of the National Museum's People and the Environment program. Discover more stories about people's relationships with Australia's natural and built environments on our People and the Environment website.