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Eternity: Stories from the Emotional Heart of Australia examined the lives of Australians – famous and not famous, living and dead – through 10 emotional themes. The gallery took its name from the story of Arthur Stace, who wrote the word 'Eternity' in chalk on the streets of Sydney.

Eternity was one of 5 original permanent galleries that opened at the National Museum of Australia on 11 March 2001. It closed on 1 June 2017.

In the 16 years that Eternity was open it featured the stories of more than 130 people, grouped within the exhibition’s 10 distinctive emotional themes.

This was a dramatic departure from themes used in more traditional museums and opened up exciting ways to examine the lives of Australian people and connect those lives in a new way, to the lives of our visitors.

Eternity aimed to be distinctive, unpredictable and unique – showing a new way in Australian museology and history.

Eternity series
  • Last updated: 3 April 2009
  • 3 programs
Hear about the joy that gardening brings to Peter Cundall, fashion designer Jenny Kee's chance survival in the Granville Train Crash and Lindy Chamberlain-Creighton on the disappearance of her daughter Azaria.

In our collection

'Eternity' sign by Arthur StaceArthur Stace was a reformed alcoholic who for 35 years was inspired to write 'Eternity' in perfect copperplate in chalk on the streets of Sydney. Many people who lived in or visited, Sydney between 1932 and 1967, would have seen the word written on footpaths. He is said to have written 'Eternity' over half a million times.
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