30 June 2016
A project commissioned by Culture Victoria, which provides digital access to the stories, collections and organisations that make up the rich cultural life of our state, was recently highly commended at the 2016 Museums & Galleries National Awards (MAGNA).
Seeing the Land from an Aboriginal Canoe, a digital story created by Wind and Sky Productions, is a project demonstrating the resourcefulness and entrepreneurship of Aboriginal navigators and canoe builders during colonial Victoria.
Consisting of a short documentary film and multimedia gallery, the project was created to coincide with National Reconciliation week in 2015. The film component of Seeing the Land from an Aboriginal Canoe was also broadcast in Melbourne's Federation Square during NAIDOC Week in 2015.
The story features interviews with traditional owners, historical perspectives, information from research essays, and collection items held by the State Library of Victoria, Museum Victoria, the Public Record Office Victoria, the Art Gallery of Ballarat, and the Ballarat Gold Museum.
The award judges noted that the project was "A highly original metaphor that is consistent with the mature and positive way in which the topic of colonisation is narrated." The judges' feedback is available in full here.
The MAGNAs commenced in 2011 to acknowledge the outstanding work undertaken Australia-wide by cultural collecting institutions that are members of Museums Australia. The awards recognise achievements across exhibitions, public programs and sustainability projects.