The 2022 Victorian Museums and Galleries Awards presentation was held on Tuesday 4 October at State Library Victoria by AMaGA Victoria.The night was hosted by Bernard Caleo, including a special message by Steve Dimopoulos MP, Minister for Creative Industries.
The Awards, now in their 29th year, are conducted annually to highlight outstanding achievements in the Victorian museum, gallery, and collecting sector. This special event raises awareness of museums and galleries as effective vehicles for engaging ideas and communities, rewards and encourages best practice by individuals and organisations, and recognises the value of museums and galleries within the community.
2022 VICTORIAN MUSEUMS AND GALLERIES AWARDS RECIPIENTS
The AMaGA Victoria Award for Excellence (volunteer)
Image: The AMaGA Victoria Award for Excellence (volunteer) winner Mick Bourke, Trafalgar Holden Museum with Jade Hadfield, Exhibitions Curator, Audience Engagement, State Library Victoria. Simon Peter Fox Photography
Winner: Mick Bourke, Trafalgar Holden Museum
Mick Bourke has been a major driver in the development and improvement of the Trafalgar Holden Museum (THM). The judges recognised Mick’s leadership skills and commitment to volunteering at the museum. His influence and advice have helped the museum to improve its governance through the development of policies and procedures over a wide range of activities and functions.
Highly commended: Helen Hill, Volunteer Guide, ACMI
The judges gave Helen a special commendation for her exceptional contribution to ACMI in her role as a Visitor Experience Volunteer at ACMI.
The AMaGA Victoria Award for Excellence (paid staff)
Image: The AMaGA Victoria Award for Excellence (paid staff) winner, Jayne Josem, CEO, Melbourne Holocaust Centre with Jade Hadfield, Exhibitions Curator, Audience Engagement, State Library Victoria. Simon Peter Fox Photography
Winner: Jayne Josem, CEO Melbourne Holocaust Museum
Through a global pandemic, whilst redeveloping the physical building, Jayne Josem remained steadfastly committed, not only to the mission of the Melbourne Holocaust Museum, but to the team she leads – the cherished Holocaust survivors, volunteers, and the wider community.
The judges praised Jayne’s strategic and focussed team support though lockdowns and the development of the intergenerational 'Survivor Connect' program. Jayne is an industry leader with a clear focus and vision for the organisation.
Highly Commended: Ashleigh Giffney, Collections Manager, Beechworth Burke Museum
The judges noted Ashley as an appreciated and experienced local professional and her skills in digitising of local collection, in collaboration with the Wooragee Landcare Group and community.
AMaGA Victoria Lifetime Achievement Award
Image: AMaGA Victoria Lifetime Achievement Award recipient Warren Doubleday, Ballarat Tramways Museum, Inc with Laura Miles, Museum and Historical Services Manager, Victoria Police Museum. Simon Peter Fox Photography
Warren Doubleday, Ballarat Tramway Museum, Inc.
As a passionate and dedicated leader in the museum sector, Warren Doubleday has committed his life to the promotion and implementation of industry best practices through his professional career as a Civil Engineer, and in the Tourist & Heritage rail sector through his involvement in the Ballarat Tramway Museum (BTM). Actively involved with the BTM for over 50 years, Warren has spent the last four decades focusing on the preservation of Ballarat’s and Victoria’s unique tram and tramway history. Judges were very impressed with Warren’s 40 years of volunteerism! A huge achievement in overseeing, advocating and contributing to the redevelopment of the Ballarat Tramway Museum.
Martin Hallett Award for individual contribution to community heritage
Image: Martin Hallett Award for individual contribution to community heritage winner Kerry Landman, Robin Boyd Foundation with Deb Tout-Smith, Senior Curator, Home and Community Life Museums Victoria. Simon Peter Fox Photography
Winner: Kerry Landman, Head Volunteer, Research and Collections, Robin Boyd Foundation
In 2014, Kerry was a founding member of the Robin Boyd Foundation’s volunteer Research and Collections team, leading a project to catalogue, digitise and preserve the foundation’s holdings, known today as the Walsh Street Archive. The judges commended Kerry on her Victoria Collections cataloguing practices. Over 7 years, Kerry has led the volunteer team to create the digital Walsh Street Archive that has been preserved and made available to all. Her leadership has been in planning, technical implementation, managing and coordinating a team of over forty volunteers. She has demonstrated the value of Victorian Collections to small cultural institutions as a tool for expanding public access and exposure to their holdings. Thanks to Kerry, the foundation’s digital archive will enable new academic and public research for years to come.
The Roslyn Lawry Award For Excellence in Cultural Heritage & Museum Studies, Deakin University
Image: Fay Lawry, Founder, Roslyn Lawry Award with Maddi More Student, Heritage and Museum Studies Deakin University and Andrea Witcomb, Alfred Deakin Professor and Associate Dean Deakin University. Simon Peter Fox Photography
Winner: Maddi Moore
The Archival Survival Award for volunteer-run organisation
Image: The Archival Survival Award for Volunteer-run Organisations winner Sue Thomson, Yarra Ranges Heritage Network with Angela Henricksen, Archival Survival. Simon Peter Fox Photography
Winner: Yarra Ranges Heritage Network for Power and the People: 150 Years of Local Government exhibition
Power and the People: 150 Years of Local Government is an exhibition by the Yarra Ranges Heritage Network, which was formed in 1995 to bring history groups together to promote and lobby for the Shire’s heritage. This project was the network’s first exhibition. With contributions from 18 historical societies and community organisations, the exhibition celebrates the 150th anniversary of the setting up of local government in the Yarra Ranges. Each organisation has chosen one example in their community to show how the partnership between the people and local government has created facilities their community still enjoys today.
The judges acknowledged a positive perspective of what communities and local government can achieve together. “A great, humble project that demonstrated innovation and creativity showcased access and equity including diverse voices.”
The Archival Survival Award for small organisations
Image: The Archival Survival Award for Small Organisations winner 2022 Golden Dragon Museum, Angela Henricksen, Archival Survival presenting award to Doug Lougoon, Chair, Golden Dragon Museum and Megan Hall, Collections Manager, Golden Dragon Museum. Simon Peter Fox Photography
Winner: Golden Dragon Museum for Loong Conservation Project
The Loong Conservation Project lasted 12-months and saw Loong conserved to the highest possible standards by conservators from Grimwade Conservation Services (GCS), BCA and other volunteers and University of Melbourne students. The project was supported by the Victorian Government through the Living Heritage Grants Program, Heritage Victoria and the University of Melbourne’s Centre for Contemporary Chinese Studies. The conservation project team (conservators and volunteers) delivered 2375 hours of treatment work to a rare and culturally significant processional dragon on permanent display at the Golden Dragon Museum.
The judges praised Golden Dragon Museum for a “great project making the process of cultural materials conservation visible to the public, particularly when it can be a very time consuming and delicate operation. Wonderfully engaging”.
Highly commended: Geoffrey Kaye Museum of Anaesthetic History (Australian and New Zealand College of Anaesthetists for their Djeembana Whakaora: First Nations medicine, health and healing exhibition.
The judges commended the museum for a project leading the way in providing a platform for First Nations knowledge to be shared and brought into contemporary vision.
Highly commended: Beechworth Burke Museum for their People of Beechworth exhibition.
The judges commended the museum for an exhibition that engages its immediate community and builds the continued collection of human stories for its collection.
The AMaGA Victoria Award for medium organisation
Image: The AMaGA Victoria Award for Medium Organisations winner Shrine of Remembrance. Andrew Hiskens, President, AMaGA Victoria with Sue Burgess, Director Public Programs and Neil Sharkey, Curator, Shrine of Remembrance. Simon Peter Fox Photography
Winner: Shrine of Remembrance for 'Lust, Love, Loss: Australian stories of wartime relationships’ special exhibition.
'Lust, Love, Loss: Australian stories of wartime relationships’ special exhibition aims to explore the complex issues surrounding matters of love and sex. The complex issues surrounding these matters profoundly affects people, everywhere and every day. Wartime is no exception. The disruptive nature of war and the extraordinary situations it brings about, invariably magnifies human experience in these spheres. The judges commended the Shrine of Remembrance for developing an exhibition addressing such universal themes of love and sex in wartime, “bringing a different audience to the Shrine and encouraging future visitation for the series of exhibitions that will follow on from this initial beautifully respectful exhibition”.
Highly Commended: Jewish Museum of Australia for their MIRKA exhibition.
The judges acknowledged a great exhibition to bring a new audience into the Jewish Museum Australia and share the story of a significant person in the Jewish and art communities as well as a local icon.
The AMaGA Victoria Award for large organisation
Image: The AMaGA Victoria Award for Large Organisations winner Museums Victoria. Andrew Hiskens, President, AMaGA Victoria with Maryanne McCubbin, Head, Strategic Collection Management, Museums Victoria Research Institute. Simon Peter Fox Photography
Winner: Museums Victoria - Safe Management of Hazardous Substances at Museums Victoria
Museums Victoria has developed a comprehensive, compliant State Collection Management framework for ensuring the safety of staff and others as they work with hazardous substances in collections. Formed over more than 160 years, Museums Victoria’s State collections consist of some 17 million items. The collections include one of the most internationally-significant collections of First Peoples’ cultural material from south-eastern and wider Australia and the Pacific, extensive scientific holdings with strengths in material from south-eastern Australia and surrounding waters, and a unique collection representing Victoria’s key historical, social and technological moments and stories. Pockets of these wide-ranging collections contain hazardous substances. MV has developed a framework that achieves an outstanding balance between thoroughness and rigour, compliance, and creative application, to do all it reasonably can to keep people safe when they work with or otherwise encounter collection items containing hazardous substances.
The judges commended Museums Victoria for “showcasing innovation in the management of hazardous collections and providing a pathway for other institutions, big and small to follow. Information about safe practices is demonstrably shared in public forums in an accessible and equitable manner. Information and procedures are empowering when they link to safe working practices”.
Highly Commended: Scienceworks, Museums Victoria for their Illuminate: How Science Comes To Light exhibition.
Judges commended this project and how it delivers a great, edgy, immersive and contemporary exhibition on a scientific complex subject matter, stimulating in every way.
VICTORIAN COLLECTIONS AWARDS FOR EXCELLENCE IN MUSEUM CATALOGUING
The Victorian Collections Award for Excellence for organisations with volunteer staff
Winner: Kew Historical Society
Kew Historical Society was founded in 1958 and is committed to preserving the history and heritage of Kew and its environs. They have an active membership, which meets monthly, and working groups that manage the collection and undertake historical research. The society has a diverse collection which includes archives, artworks, audio-visual material, items of fashion and design, books, documents, maps and artefacts.
Search the collection at: https://victoriancollections.net.au/organisations/kew-historical-society
Highly Commended: Eltham District Historical Society
The Victorian Collections Award for Excellence for organisations with paid staff
Winner: The Beechworth Burke Museum
The Beechworth Burke Museum is one of Australia’s oldest museums and are progressively digitising its significant 19th-century taxidermy collection and making it accessible to the public via Victorian Collections. As well as natural history specimens dating back to the 1860s (including the extinct Tasmanian tiger), the collection also includes a comprehensive collection of south-eastern Australian Indigenous artefacts, objects relating to the discovery and mining of gold in Beechworth and material documenting local families.
You can search the collection at: https://victoriancollections.net.au/organisations/burke-memorial-museum
Highly Commended: Uniting Church Archives – Synod of Victoria
The Victorian Collections Award for Excellence for war heritage organisation
Winner: Melbourne Legacy
Melbourne Legacy is dedicated to caring for families of Australian Defence Force veterans who have lost their lives or health serving their country. Their collection serves as an archive of items representing the history of the Legacy Club of Melbourne and the services that have been provided to the families of veterans by Melbourne Legacy from its inception to the present time.
You can search the collection at: https://victoriancollections.net.au/organisations/melbourne-legacy
Highly Commended: Bendigo Military Museum
The Victorian Collections Award for Excellence for gallery and civic art collection
Winner: Federation University Australia Art Collection
Federation University Australia Art Collection is an important public art collection, which contributes to the intellectual and cultural enrichment of its student body, staff and the wider community. The collection enhances the physical environment by adding colour and liveliness to the University and is displayed throughout our Ballarat, Gippsland (Churchill), Stawell and Horsham campuses. The collection covers most periods of Australian Art with works by renowned Australian artists as well as staff and students associated with Federation University Australia or its predecessor institutions.
You can search the collection at: https://victoriancollections.net.au/organisations/federation-university-australia-art-collection
Highly Commended: Ararat Gallery TAMA (Textile Art Museum Australia)
MUSEUM ACCREDITATION RECIPIENTS
Three organisations were Reaccredited this year: the Australian Racing Museum and the Geoffrey Kaye Museum of Anaesthetic History as part of the Museum Accreditation Program, and Whitehorse Historical Society as part of the Community Museum Accreditation Program. Victorian collecting organisations have been supported through Accreditation for 29 years. The Programs aim to guide on-going development and bring about positive change by supporting organisations to preserve and manage collections and enrich community experiences.
Congratulations to all Awards and Accreditation recipients, to all Highly Commended individuals and organisations, and thank you to all our fantastic nominees. The outstanding quality of the nominations received testifies to the extraordinary vitality of the Victorian museum and gallery sector.