INSITE / August-October 2018 / Ethics


The August-October 2018 Ethics issue of INSITE has six articles about projects in museums and galleries that have addressed ethical issues. Below is a list of the issue’s contents and associated links. For information about how to get a copy you can contact our office or subscribe to INSITE via our website.

Elizabeth Marsden (page 2)
Wrapped in Red: museum ethics and the Pern Collection
The Gold Museum has introduced an educational program for students so they can learn about museum ethics and repatriation. In this article Elizabeth Marsden, Manager Collections, The Sovereign Hill Museums Association, explains how the program works and how students have responded.

Kate MacNeill & Dr Barbara Bolt (page 3)
Art, Ethics and Institutional Risk
If taking risks are part of an artists practice, how are collecting institutions to manage fallout in the court of public opinion and when ethical boundaries are crossed? In this article Associate Professor Kate MacNeill, Director, Graduate School of Humanities and Social Sciences and Dr Barbara Bolt, Professor in Contemporary Arts and Culture, The University of Melbourne, take us through some examples and issues.

Linda Peacock (page 4)
Decolonising the Museums: ethics and ownership
In 2018, staff at the Robert O’Hara Burke Museum returned 16 objects from the R.E. Johns collection to their traditional owners. Linda Peacock, Collections Manager, Robert O’Hara Burke Museum, explains the process of their return and the positive outcomes for the museum and the community.

Alexis Arrowsmith (page 5)
Remains of the War
In this article Alexis Arrowsmith discusses how public attitudes to human remains from 100 years of 20th century conflict and our reactions to them have evolved and asks, if these remains are no longer viewed as objects and they can’t be exhibited and we aren’t learning from them, what happens to them next? Alexis Arrowsmith is currently A/Manager, Veterans Branch, Department of Premier and Cabinet, and holds qualifications in History, Sociology, Cultural Heritage and International Law.

Sarah Rood & Lucy Bracey (page 6)
What are the Ethics of Oral History?
Oral histories are a valuable medium for capturing lived experiences that will contribute to a custodian’s knowledge of their collection and their community’s history. In this article Sarah Rood and Lucy Bracey, from Way Back When–Consulting Historians, outline some of the ethical and practical considerations for recording an oral history.

Tom Freshwater (page 7)
Prejudice & Pride: exploring LGBTQ heritage
In 2017, the National Trust (England, Wales & Northern Ireland) explored marginalised heritage with their Prejudice & Pride program of exhibitions, Pride Festivals and related events. Tom Freshwater, National Public Programmes Manager, National Trust for England, Wales and Northern Ireland, takes us through some of the ethical considerations of the program and what was achieved.

Amanda Pagliarino (page 8)
AICCM: The Collection Environment Survey
The AICCM have released The Collection Environment Survey for museums, galleries, libraries, archives and other heritage organisations. Amanda Pagliarino, Head of Conservation & Registration, QAGOMA, explains how you can participate.

Recapping the Conference (page 9)
The sold-out Agents of Change national conference was a great success with delegates making use of the opportunity to meet colleagues and hear speakers on subjects ranging from artificial intelligence through to interrupted careers.

Martin Warneke (page 10)
The Marine Loo at the Queenscliffe Maritime Museum
Martin Warneke, Member Committee of Management and Leader of Education and Displays Teams, Queenscliffe Maritime Museum, tells the story of how the Queenscliffe Maritime Museum have maximised the discovery of a maritime toilet to create a conservation learning partnership and treatment, community engagement and a fully interpreted display.

Elise Hearst (page 10)
Multicultural Museums Victoria
In April, Multicultural Museums Victoria (MMV) announced its formation and launched its inaugural Grandmothers project. Elise Hearst, Marketing Coordinator, Multicultural Museums Victoria, explains what MMV is and where they are headed.

Apps & Online (page 13)

History Lab
History Lab is a podcast created through a collaboration between the Australian Centre for Public History at the University of Technology Sydney and community radio station 2SER 107.3 that wants to “draw you in to the investigative process.”

Know Your Own Bone
KYOB is a website created by Colleen Dilenschneider, Chief Market Engagement Officer, IMPACTS Research & Development, and focuses on “market research and the behavioural economics surrounding cultural organisations.”

Homeward Bound
Homeward Bound is a leadership, strategic and science initiative for women that aims to, “heighten the influence and impact of women with a science background in order to influence policy and decision making as it shapes our planet.”

MOD (Museum of Discovery) at the University of South Australia is a future-focused museum that aims to provoke new ideas in science, art and innovation.

Shrine Podcasts
Many of the Public Programs held at the Shrine of Remembrance are recorded and available for download. You can listen to Curator, Neil Sharkey discuss the challenges associated with bringing The Light Horse exhibition to life.

Ballarat Art Gallery Collection Online
The Ballarat Art Gallery have launched their collection database online. The collection has over 1,000 paintings and over 7,000 works on paper.

Trust me, I’m an Artist
Aims to provide artists, cultural institutions and audiences with the skills to understand the ethical issues that arise in the creation and exhibition of artworks made in collaboration with biotechnology and biomedicine. They have developed the DIY, Trust me, I’m an Artist (TMIAA) toolkit.

The items included in Apps & Online are information listings and have not been tested or reviewed by MA (Vic).


Creative Victoria Logo
AMaGA Victoria respectfully acknowledge the Traditional Owners of the land on which we work, the Woi Wurrung people and honour their Ancestors, Elders and next generations of community. AMaGA Victoria acknowledges and pays respect to the Elders of all the Nations of Victoria, past, present and emerging.