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[Exhibition Review] Traversing Antarctica: The Australian experience




Antonello, Alessandro

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National Museum of Australia Press


One hundred years ago Douglas Mawson and the men of the Australasian Antarctic Expedition set sail from Hobart for Antarctica. They landed at Commonwealth Bay on 8 January 1911, establishing not merely a base, but making the first specifically Australian place upon the ice. Despite earlier Australian encounters with the region, this act of settlement is being marked as the beginning of a century of a deep and sustained connection with the Antarctic. Engaging directly with these centennial celebrations is Traversing Antarctica: The Australian Experience, a travelling exhibition created by the National Archives of Australia in collaboration with the Australian Antarctic Division and the Western Australian Museum, and opening first at the Tasmanian Museum and Art Gallery, Hobart. The exhibition is about Australia's political and scientific experience of the Antarctic over the last century. The story is told through the seminal moments in that history, the major, Australian-led expeditions that undertook science, exploration and territorial acquisition: the Australasian Antarctic Expedition (AAE) of 1911–14, led by Douglas Mawson; the British Australian New Zealand Antarctic Expedition (BANZARE) of 1929–31, also led by Mawson; and the continuing Australian National Antarctic Research Expeditions (ANARE) after 1948, under various leaders from the Australian Antarctic Division





reCollections: Journal of the National Museum of Australia



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