With discussions underway about where to build Australia’s national centre for Aboriginal art and culture, the name of a humble museum at the University of Western Australia has been thrown into the mix.

Founded by anthropologists Catherine and Ronald Berndt in 1976, The Berndt Museum of Anthropology houses one of the world’s most significant collections of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander art and cultural material, including over 11,500 objects and 35,000 photographs and audio-visual recordings.

Telling stories from different times and places, the museum contains UNSECO listed Yirrkala drawings from north-east Arnhem Land, some of the earliest pieces of contemporary art for the Birrundudu in North Territory, and human figures intricately craved onto boab nuts from the Kimberley.

The Berndt collection has significantly contributed to the current education of Aboriginal culture and provides an invaluable insight into the history of Aboriginal people, both ancient and contemporary.

 In August, WA Treasurer Ben Wyatt committed $2 million towards the planning of an Aboriginal Cultural Centre. Given this announcement and the fact that Berndt has been seeking to establish a standalone museum to display their collection and expand it beyond the artefacts collated by Reynold and Catherine Berndt, the timing seems right for the establishment of a national indigenous centre right here in WA.

However, the competition for being the home state of the centre is stiff, with South Australia and the North Territory also vying for the honour. With an official announcement on where the centre will be built seemingly a while off, Perth residents are lucky enough the have the Berndt within arm’s reach. Many of the collection’s artworks are exhibited at the Lawrence Wilson Art Gallery, which is also located on the grounds of UWA. For viewings of the anthropological artefacts, visitors will need to book ahead.

Image credit: Lawrence Wilson Art Gallery Website.

More Museums across WA

 

Join Our Community
You May Also Like

Related Posts

Winner of prestigious sculpture award crowned at Sculpture By The Sea 2021

Sculpture by the Sea, Cottesloe’s iconic annual outdoor sculpture exhibition, opens today (March 5) for its 17th year. Local artist Jarrod Taylor has been announced as the winner of the prestigious Western Australian Sculptor Scholarship worth $10,000. Alongside 11 interstate and 25 international artworks, 34 WA artists will showcase works this year, with the exhibition […]

The search is on for Northbridge’s new secret 70s disco bar, Toots

Northbridge’s Chinatown has gained a new dance bar, but it’s up to you to find out exactly where it is! Here’s some insider knowledge we can share: Password protected and in a mystery location, guests can drop into Toots from 6.00pm on Thursday April 22, but will need to follow clues to find this new […]

Top kids activities and events coming up in Perth for the school holidays

School holidays are upon us, and Perth is jam-packed with family-friendly activities to fill up that holiday schedule. From LEGO exhibitions to puppet shows, and a huge array of creative workshops and classes, we’ve got you covered with our guide featuring all the exciting events coming up to beat those boredom blues. Top kids activities […]