Newcastle Lord Mayor Nuatali Nelmes (middle) and Newcastle Museum Director Julie Baird (right) celebrate the 10th anniversary milestone with long-time Museum visitors Sasha Pyatetskaya and her sons Brooklyn and Sebastian Skrynnik. Picture: Supplied
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Newcastle Museum celebrates a decade at Honeysuckle

After welcoming more than 1.5 million curious people through its doors, who have enjoyed 71 exhibitions and thousands of events, it seems Newcastle Museum is only just getting started.

The city’s cultural cornerstone celebrated the 10th anniversary of the Museum opening its doors at Honeysuckle this week.

Museum director Julie Baird said the landmark occasion would be marked with a whole year’s worth of celebratory events.

“We plan to celebrate the Museum’s significant milestone with activities across the next 12 months, kicking off with a 10th-anniversary exhibition showcasing specially commissioned works by much-loved local artist Trevor Dickinson, whose colourful, larger-than-life murals including the Newcastle Museum Photowall have formed such an intrinsic part of the Museum and its surrounds,” Julie said.

Julie added that the Museum’s transformation continues with the planting, on Tuesday, of various native tree species in four sections of Museum Park as part of the Living Labels project.

“The trees and shrubs planted relate directly to objects within the Museum’s collection and offer a new way to interpret and understand Newcastle’s geography and history, providing a living connection between the natural landscape and the stories of our past,” she said.

Lord Mayor Nuatali Nelmes was full of praise for the Museum’s considerable achievements over the past decade.

“The award-winning Museum is on the cutting edge of contemporary museum practice and has been nationally recognised for its innovative exhibitions, which create insightful and immersive ways to interpret and preserve our city’s fascinating history,” she said.

I’m proud to see how much it has achieved during the past 10 years and I can’t wait to experience what else it has in store during the next decade and beyond.” 

There’s no doubt that Newcastle Museum has enriched the cultural lives of many Novocastrians, not least 10-year-oldSebastian Skrynnik.

Sebastian, whose parents emigrated to Newcastle from Russia, has been visiting the museum since he was a baby.

“We’ve shared a lot of great memories inside these walls,” Sebastian said. 

“It’s where I came a few times a week as we couldn’t afford to go to preschool or playgroups – but the museum gave me a place that had everything I needed. I remember playing here with so many different kids, exploring and learning.  

“My parents came to Australia to give me a better life, and what they found for us was a new family and a community that’s part of my life now.”  

And, as usual, there’s currently plenty to explore at Newcastle Museum including the self-curated The Castanet Club: an exhibition you can dance to! and a travelling exhibition from the Monash Gallery of Art showcasing the work of John Gollings, Australia’s pre-eminent photographer of the built environment, who coincidentally was commissioned to snap the museum when it first opened at Honeysuckle.

Newcastle Museum is open from Tuesday to Sunday from 10am to 5pm. Head here for more information.

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