Looking for Special Some years after the millennium turned, on a hot summer’s day in the Antipodes, a cohort of Australian libraries garnered their efforts to gather the best of their objects and manuscripts. Their purpose was to mount an exhibition showcasing Australia’s priceless treasures. In time over two hundred items were selected and assembled for display, although the criteria for assessing the nation’s ‘jewels’ remains a mystery to this day. Like other exhibitions of this kind, the contents of National Treasureswere presented as an assortment of ‘extraordinary items that have shaped our nation’,1 images and cultural objects deemed to be of particular relevance to Australian life. How do you measure values and significance such as this? What does the history of a nation look like when it is made of materials like wood, stone, paper, and metal rather than the abstract forces of words, ideas, events, and beliefs? Can we even separate the matter from its meaning in the first place?
|Title of host publication||Object Stories: Artifacts and Archaeologists|
|Editors||Steve Brown; Anne Clarke; Ursula Frederick|
|Place of Publication||Walnut Creek, CA|
|Publisher||Left Coast Press|
|Publication status||Published - 2015|