Ola Cohn (1892-1964) was a pioneer of modernist sculpture in Australia. She was the first Australian sculptor to carve large commissioned pieces freehand in stone, and created one of her most famous sculptures, the Fairies’ Tree, as a gift to Australian children.

Born in Bendigo, Cohn studied drawing and sculpture at the Bendigo School of Mines and Swinburne Technical College. Following...
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It's picnic time! Today's Sunday drive takes us to the banks of the Murray in 1926.
Need something to listen to this evening? Here's a great interview with Alicia Sometimes from The Garret Podcast.

(And congrats to The Garret for being shortlisted in the first ever Cast Away - the Australian Podcast Awards!)

Alicia Sometimes: Poet, author and commentator

Shirley Andrews (1915–2001) was born in Melbourne, Victoria. She was a biochemist, Aboriginal-rights activist, dancer and researcher.

In 1937, Shirley completed a degree in science at the University of Melbourne and, upon graduation, won a Caroline Kay Scholarship and worked for six years at the university's veterinary school. Shirley join CSIR (later CSIRO) as a research officer in 1947....
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Collins St, 1935.
This is a mourning brooch made with the intertwined woven hair of two Methodist ladies who were devoted to each other, and who together ran a working farm employing several men in the Geelong area from the 1840s. When Anne Drysdale died, her partner Caroline Newcombe had the brooch made for a mutual friend. It’s very delicate; only 7 cm long. The method of weaving the hair is similar to a...
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We're trialling a new online database! This one features a range of primary sources related to the arts in the Victorian era, from playbills and scripts to operas and complete scores.

It's available until 1 April. Have a look and let us know what you think.

British Theatre, Music, and Literature: High and Popular Culture

Mary Reibey (1777–1855) was a convict and successful businesswoman. She's featured on the Australian $20 note.

Mary was born Molly Haddock in Bury, England. She was arrested for stealing a horse at the age of 14 and sentenced to seven years' transportation. She arrived in Sydney in 1792.

She married Thomas Reibey in 1794. He started a cargo business, bought several farms and traded in...
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We know a lot about the weather—maybe that's because we love talking about it so much. But do you know how we know what we know?

It's World Meteorological Day so let's look back the history of weather research. It involves storm maps, shipwrecks and, surprisingly, leeches.

Cloud watching: how we came to understand the weather

Nancy Sanders (1920–2014) was born in Southport, Queensland. Was a teacher and business woman. In the 1950s, she was considered "Australia's highest-paid woman".

Nancy became a teacher at Cairns High School in her late teens. As WWII started, she joined the American Red Cross at the director of food services. As the war came to a close, she moved to London to work for British Celanese, a...
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Florence Morphy (1860–1944) was born in Victoria. She created one of Australian sport's most enduring icons: the Ashes urn.

The term 'ashes' dates back to a mock obituary published after Australia's first victory over the English cricket team in England, 1882: ‘In affectionate remembrance of English cricket, which died at the Oval on 29th August, 1882, deeply lamented by a large circle of...
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What makes someone travel across the world to start a new life in a strange country? Spend #HarmonyDay exploring the stories of Iranian immigrants in our new exhibition Building a home away from home.

Details here: [ Vic.gov.au Link ]
Valda Unthank was a champion cyclist in Victoria during the 1930s. She broke numerous records for speed, distance and time spent riding, becoming a household name in the process.

In 1938, Valda broke records for riding from Adelaide to Melbourne, travelling just over 760km in 33 hours and 39 minutes. She spent all over 30 minutes resting during the ride—and she didn't sleep.

Later that...
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Flinders Street ☔

Philip E. Ettelson collection, 1929–35
Erica McGilchrist (1926–2014) was born at Mount Gambier, South Australia. She was a painter, illustrator and teacher.

Erica started art classes at the SA School of Arts and Crafts when she was ten years old. She studied there part time until 1946, stopping after she graduated from the Adelaide Teachers College with an Art Teacher's Certificate. Erica had also danced: she took classes at and...
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Are you a writer? You can't miss this episode of The Garret Podcast with Tony Birch.

Tony Birch: Literary fiction | THE GARRET PODCAST

Today's Sunday drive takes us to the Melton Reservoir, 1915.

You can find out more about this photo (and the collection it's part of) here: [ Vic.gov.au Link ]
On 20 September 1866 Mrs Matilda Butters attended the highly anticipated Mayor’s Fancy Dress Ball in Melbourne’s new exhibition buildings as 'The Press'. Stunning a crowd of 1200 frocked-up revellers, Mrs Butters’ dress was pieced together with 31 pieces of custom-printed silk satin, using printing plates from 13 different Melbourne newspapers, including the Age, Argus, Herald, Australasian,...
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Spot the dome