The Vice-Chancellor Professor S. Bruce Dowton and Faculty of Arts Executive Dean Professor Martina Möllering cut the ribbon to mark the soft launch of the Macquarie University History Museum last week.
Members of the Executive Group, Arts Executive, Museum members, staff and special guests came together for the significant occasion, with the Vice-Chancellor stressing the importance of our engagement with history and the critical role a museum such as this plays in this context.
“A museum like this makes tangible connections to history that are easy to see, touch and feel,” explained Professor Dowton.
“My congratulations to all involved, to Martina, and to the team which reimagined this entire complex and designed this wonderful Museum.”
Exclusively open to Macquarie staff and students at this stage, the Museum is home to more than 18,000 artefacts which span a period of about 5000 years.
“As you can imagine this is a very exciting day for the Faculty of Arts, with staff and students now able to come in freely and enjoy the artefacts,” said Professor Möllering.
One collection sure to excite visitors is the temporary exhibition, East meets West – the Crusades and the Age of Decolonisation, which Museum Director Professor Martin Bommas unveiled at the soft opening.
For this exhibition, select objects from the Museum’s own collection join treasures on loan from private collectors to tell a story of a turbulent and defining era in human history.
“After the crusades had raged for 206 years, the world had changed,” says Professor Bommas. “Europeans had had enough of Vatican rule and started establishing monarchies; new political ideas were coming up and people were connected by trade; Arabic literature was influencing the West and Western architecture was slowly being introduced through the east.
“So, the whole world came together and people grew together, but it was only for a very short period of time, 45 years, because then the Black Death came.”
The Museum is open Monday-Friday, 10am-5pm, and is located on the ground floor of 25C Wally’s Walk. Swipe your MQ staff/student card to enter and sign in with the QR code. Every Monday at 2pm, except for public or University holidays, the Museum offers one-hour guided tours, no pre-bookings required.