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Historic treasures on show in new gallery

13 October 2017

Some of the most treasured objects in the Australian Museum’s extensive collection will be on permanent display with the official opening of the Westpac Long Gallery.

NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian, who opened the gallery and launched the 200 Treasures of the Australian Museum exhibit with Minister for the Arts Don Harwin today, said the exhibition celebrated the cultural history of our nation.

“The Australian Museum, opened in 1827, was the first museum in the country and it has an unrivalled collection of treasures,” Ms Berejiklian said.

“This gallery and exhibition gives visitors excellent access to some of the best items in the collection, some of which have not been on display for many years.”

The items on display in 200 Treasures include:

  • The remains of a 120 million-year-old Australian pliosaur
  • The body of a preserved Thylacine pup from 1886
  • A wooden sledge from Sir Douglas Mawson’s expedition to Antarctica
  • The 10kg Maitland bar gold nugget
  • Dilly bags made by Bundjalung women

Mr Harwin said the NSW Government was committed to investing in NSW’s cultural institutions.

“The Westpac Long Gallery is a fantastic addition to Sydney’s cultural facilities, and I encourage everyone to visit this incredible exhibition,” Mr Harwin said.

Australian Museum Director and CEO Kim McKay AO said the exhibition brought to life the Museum’s research and collections for everyone to enjoy.

“The Australian Museum is an important symbol of our nation’s history – from its early days as a storehouse of the rare and exotic, to the now vast collections – an encyclopedia of knowledge on Australia and the Pacific,” Ms McKay said.

The Westpac Long Gallery has been restored through a $9 million joint contribution from the NSW Government, the Australian Museum Foundation donors, and Westpac. The public can visit from tomorrow.

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