Posts Tagged ‘State Library of South Australia’

Allsorts Online 09 on the Web

The Collections Australia Network (CAN) has posted six videos from the Allsorts Online 09 Forum in Adelaide for the benefit of those people who were not able to travel the distance. Science communicator Susannah Elliot talks about how cultural institutions can use history to look at contemporary issues. Gavin Artz explains how the arts can benefit from the disruptive digital revolution from the perspective of the Australian Network for Art and Technology (ANAT). Gavin Bannerman offers wild and entertaining stories about a mobile hairdressing salon in Cape York from the State Library’s Q150 digital storytelling project.

The presentations are a snapshot into some of the innovative projects happening in the sector. The panel discussion at the end of the forum was a terrific debate as to where the sector is going. It questioned whether institutions should become broadcasters or whether their role should remain as collectors and preservers of history. This is an issue the National Film and Sound Archive now faces as it relaunches its website Australian Screen Online. Allsorts Online 09 was hosted in collaboration with the State Library of South Australia and the Australian Network for Art and Technology (ANAT). Here are some photos on Flickr of the event. State Library of NSW’s Ellen Forsyth uses Twitter as a note-taking device. The Twitter hashtag for the forum was #Allsorts09.

AusStage: Collective Intelligence and Data Visualisation for Performing Arts eResearch

Dr Jonathan Bollen: Senior Lecturer, School of Humanities, Flinders University
AusStage is the Australian hub for research on live performance, linking researchers in universities, industry and government. It stimulates smart information use, promotes collaboration on innovative methodologies, and integrates access to collections. AusStage is extending its infrastructure to harness collective intelligence, to visualise the knowledge embedded in the AusStage database, and to deliver next-generation tools and services for information analysis, while continuing to populate the database with comprehensive coverage of live performance in Australia.

Jonathan plays a leading role in coordinating research for the AusStage project, with particular interests in data visualisation. He is co-author of Men at Play: Masculinities in Australian Theatre since the 1950s (with Adrian Kiernander and Bruce Parr, Rodopi 2008). His research on gender, sexuality and performance has been published in The Drama Review, Social Semiotics and Australasian Drama Studies.

Disruptive Digital

Gavin Artz, CEO, Australian Network for Arts and Technology (ANAT)
Gavin Artz’s experience in business management ranges from multi-national companies, to not-forprofit community organisations. His diverse background spans arts and commerce – with a BA in Politics; Double Bass and Composition Studies at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music; a Graduate Certificate in Business Management; and he is now completing his MBA. After working as a professional musician for many years, Gavin is currently pursuing creativity in business management with a focus on governance and strategy.

Digital Storytelling: Storylines – Q150 Digital Stories

Gavin Bannerman: Oral History and Digital Storytelling Coordinator, State Library of Queensland
Storylines is the State Library of Queensland’s digital storytelling project to capture the people, places and events that make up Queensland in its 150th year. Hear about the challenges of interviewing aboard moving steam trains, trying to contact travelling hairdressers in Cape York and making the outcomes accessible to the public.

Gavin has commissioned, created, acquired, registered, documented and made accessible oral histories and digital stories that relate to SLQ’s strategic objective of capturing “Queensland Memory.” Gavin is trained as an archivist, receiving a Graduate Diploma in Records Management and Archives from Curtin University. He has been involved with arranging and describing archival material, training cultural organisation staff in image digitisation, and consulting with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities regarding cultural clearance for images in SLQ’s collection.

Open Access: Conquering Copyright

Jessica Coates, Project Manager, Creative Commons Australia and the Creative Commons Clinic, Queensland University of Technology
Navigating the ins and out of copyright law can often be the most costly and difficult part of providing open access to a collection. Jessica will talk about what can and is being done by collecting institutions worldwide to share their collections and engage with audiences in the digital era – legally.

Jessica examines the legal mechanisms that encourage innovation in the creative industries, and promote and track the implementation of the international open content licensing movement, Creative Commons, in Australia. Prior to working for the Clinic, Jessica spent most of the last decade as a copyright and communications policy officer with the Commonwealth Department of Communications, Information Technology and the Arts (DCITA).

Web 2.0 and Social Media: Collections, Flickr and the Media

Jenny Scott, Content Services Librarian, State Library of South Australia
In her presentation Jenny describes the process by which she brought a small private collection to the attention of a nation. The collection of photos and documents that could have easily been lost or discarded over the previous 60 years became the foundation of a Web 2.0 project that gained front page media attention.

Jenny is implementing the State Library’s presence on Flickr. After completing an Associate Diploma in Photography in the early 1980s Jenny operated her own commercial photography business at Port Adelaide. In 1993 she graduated BA in History and Politics from Adelaide University and in 1994 Graduate Diploma in Library and Information Management from the University of South Australia. After three years as an archivist with State Records of South Australia in 2000 she moved to the State Library of South Australia to take up the position of Curator Pictorial Collection.

Building Relationships with Media to Promote Research

Susannah Elliot, CEO Science Media Centre, Adelaide
Mention the word science to a senior editor and you’ll see them shift uncomfortably and look around for an excuse to get away from you. But talk to them about the dust storms in Sydney, why there are more mosquitoes this year, the science of Taser guns or even the bizarre mating habits of redback spiders and you’ll have their interest.

The reason for this is that those outside the realm of science and research still see it as an academic pursuit of little relevance to their daily lives. This talk is about making research the topic of media interest by making it relevant to the current debates and the breaking news with which we’re all consumed.

Susannah works with the news media to inject more evidence-based science into public discourse. Prior to this she spent more than five years in Stockholm, Sweden, as director of communications for the International Geosphere-Biosphere Programme (IGBP), an international network of scientists studying global environmental change. In the 1990s Susannah managed the Centre for Science Communication at UTS, where she helped establish the successful Horizons of Science series of media roundtables and was involved in numerous other initiatives such as Science in the Pub and Science in the Bush.


The power of linking Flickr, Media and Blogs! : Jenny Scott

State Library of South Australia archivist Jenny Scott began scanning and uploading a set of images, titled RNZAF 6 Squadron 1943-45, onto her Adelaide Archivist Flickr photostream in March 2008. She currently has 148 black and white images of New Zealand Air Force members in the S.W. Pacific, revealing moments of camaraderie from men giving each other haircuts to posing for photos on their PBY Catalina Flying Boats and swimming off the coast of Ngella Sule in the Solomon Islands.

Before the death of Jenny’s father Alastair ‘Scotty’ Scott in 1993, they shared a project writing to 6 Squadron veterans and building on a collection of photographs Scotty had rescued at wars end. With the advantage of the internet and Flickr, Jenny returned to the unfinished project with the aim of sharing the results of their research with other families of the veterans, in the hope they could gain an appreciation of their father’s and grandfather’s wartime experience. In late August 2009, Jenny emailed the Wellington Dominion Post about the photos and they ran a front page story. Jenny could not have been prepared for the overwhelming response she received from publishing this material. Some would describe it as life-changing. Jenny has given us a little insight into how she is managing the success of the project.

Greasy Pole competition at Halavo Bay, Solomon Islands, 1945. Flickr / Adelaide Archivist


Since reading Liz Holcombe’s blog post on CAN, I had considered how , a related blog would inform and provide context to the Flickr photos. The rush of emails that followed publication of the newspaper story meant that I had to find a more efficient way of sharing information with those with an interest. Hits on my Flickr site had grown in 48 hours from an average of 200 per day to 15,000+ on the 28th of August, they settled back to 11,000+ on the 29th. Liz Holcombe’s CAN post was the inspiration for one answer, a 6 Squadron blog.

Beaching crew bring a RNZAF PBY-5 ‘Cat’ onto the hard at Halavo Bay, Solomon Islands, 1944-45. Photo courtesy of N.W. ‘Norm’ Brailey. Flickr/ Adelaide Archivist

Life has not been the same since, rising each morning to new emails that require a response and each evening replying to emails, adding to the blog or adding to content and description to the Flickr site. The collection has become central to the development of 6 Squadron’s history and has been indexed by DigitalNZ, I have been invited to address the NZ Association of Women in Aviation 50th anniversary meeting in June 2010 and to the NZ Air Force Museum (Christchurch) and RNZAF Auckland (the 2009 home of 6 Squadron), wrote an article for NZ Air Force News coming out in October, managed a debate between two families claiming the same Catalina Captain as their own, corresponded daily with families in NZ and Australia with all the records management implications of having 80+ correspondence streams – second job doesn’t describe it adequately – more like second life!

If you are interested or have any information on RNZAF No.6 F/B Squadron, please email Jenny Scott – she needs the records management practice!


Trail Blazing: Fiona Hooton

Fiona Hooton is the third guest writer in our series that aims to share knowledge, experience and resources with the CAN community. Fiona talks about the new project Trail Blazing that Picture Australia and The Le@rning Federation have worked on together. It is a suite of slideshow picture trails with education kits that enables school students to explore and learn about Picture Australia’s wonderful collection of images.

Trail blazing is the practice of marking paths with blazes, which follow each other at certain but not necessarily exactly defined distances, and that mark directions. Picture Australia and The Le@rning Federation (TLF) have been working together to create picture trails that blaze a path through the vast tracts of Australia’s visual heritage.

Fiona Hooton, Picture Australia manager

TLF is a federal, Australian and New Zealand Government initiative. Its purpose is to develop online curriculum content for Australian and New Zealand schools and build resources for the upcoming national curriculum. The primary role of Picture Australia is to increase public access to Australian image collections and to build collaborative relationships with other Australian collecting institutions.

Together TLF and Picture Australia have created a suite of slideshow picture trails. These trails provide interpretation of some of the largest and most magnificent picture collections that are contributed to Picture Australia by collecting agencies across the county. These trails place this invaluable primary source material where it is most needed on the computer screens of 13,000 New Zealand and Australian schools. But it isn’t just passive viewing, as students and teachers can draw all over the projected trail images using interactive white boards, working together to plot visual questions and highlight focal points.

The trails have been curated by TLF researcher, Charles Morgan, an education specialist with many years experience. Morgan is President, of the Network of Education Associations of Tasmania (NEAT) and the Tasmanian Association for the Teaching of English (TATE).

Morgan marks out the collective meaning of his curatorial selection with accompanying education value statements. Like blazes, these statements do more than simply reassure the user he or she is on the right track, they signal the imminent twists and jolts that our visual culture provides.

For example, the Advertising in Australia trail clearly reflects the changing nature of Australian society from 1870 until 1954 through our consuming passions. This trail lays bare the subtle and not so subtle messages that graphic artists and advertisers use in their trade to manipulate our buying behaviour. Some of the past techniques used now appear to be exceedingly comical.

Men and women posing for a toothpaste advertisement, Sidney Riley, 1923, State Library of South Australia.

In Cartoons and Caricatures, Morgan has selected the work of some of Australia’s best known cartoonists, to highlight people and issues of interest at different times in Australian history from 1786 to 1950.

The Billy book, Hughes abroad, 50 new drawings, 1916, Sir David Low, 1891-1963, National Library of Australia.

Most of the trails contain thirty images, but some like the Mawson in Antarctica show are expeditions of epic proportions with over fifty images.

Mawson rests at the side of sledge, outward bound on first sledge journey in Adelie Land, 1911-1914, State Library of New South Wales.

Given the importance of conflict in forging our national psyche, Morgan has dedicated five trails to different aspects of Australian wartime experiences. In Scenes from the Second World War all the icons of war photography: Damien Parer, George Silk and Frank Hurley can be found. Their images etch the shocking details of the consequences of war and the atrocious conditions in which Australian soldiers fought. In ‘Scenes from the Western Front’ the preparations for combat, action at the front, conditions in the trenches and the aftermath of different battles are organised in sequence.

Members of the crew of the cruiser HMAS Canberra engaged in live firing practice with 0.50 inch (12.7mm) four barrel machine guns used in a close range anti aircraft role, 1939-1945, Damien Parer, Australian War Memorial.

Picture Australia functions to bring Australian collections together in one cultural database. The Trail Blazing project reveals the importance for researchers of seeing these collections in relationship with one another. Only the juxtapositions between these luminous collections provide the signposts for us to follow the decisive directions our national heritage has taken and to explore why.
These trails are addictive viewing for anyone looking for answers to these questions.

Fiona Hooton
Picture Australia slideshow trails
This article was adapted from an article published in the National Library of Australia’s Gateways – an online journal for the Australian library profession and community.


The Archivist Social Club on Flickr

Building communities around special interests is what Flickr excels at. The State Library of South Australia content services librarian Jenny Scott has set up a Flickr social group for archivists around the world. Archivists are encouraged to upload photos of their peers. It could be a photograph of a staff member in the office or the VI European Conference on Archives dinner they went to in Firenze in 2001 or even at the COFSTA residential school in Bungendore in 1999. This means archivists can make contact with someone they had chatted to over coffee but never met again or they can approach a person they admire but have never had the chance to meet. Jenny does not want institutions or archival collections but the people responsible for the wonderful archival work that is done.

From May 30 to June 2 2001 the VI European Conference on Archives was held in Firenze, Italia. The archivist conference dinner was held in the courtyard of the Palazzo Pitti.
VI European Conference on Archives, May 30 to June 2 2001, Firenze, Italia. Conference dinner was held in the courtyard of the Palazzo Pitti. Flickr/Adelaide Archivist

Jenny has criteria Flickr members need to adhere to when uploading their photos: ‘It maybe educational or comic but never rude or illegal and it must be ARCHIVISTS. I know it goes without saying that a good archivist would not add an image without METADATA, not necessarily full DUBLIN CORE but WHO, WHAT, WHERE and WHEN are likely to make your images interesting and CREATIVE COMMONS licensing will make your photos sharable.‘

Members of the Australian Society of Archivists Beer Special Interest Group entertain Eric during the ASA conference in Adelaide, 2003. Flickr/Adelaide Archivist
Members of the Australian Society of Archivists Beer Special Interest Group entertain Eric during the ASA conference in Adelaide, 2003. Flickr/Adelaide Archivist

Like many cultural institutions, the State Library of South Australia has also uploaded its historic photographs to Flickr. Later this year in Brisbane Jenny will discuss the advantages of using Web 2.0 technology to build new audiences and allow the public to add information to the image descriptions at the Australian Society of Archivists Brisbane conference Voyaging Together.

Email Jenny if you would like to know anymore information about using Flickr or the archivist social group.