The State Museum for Western Australia, the Western Australian Museum has six main sites around the state, with its Perth site remaining central to the museum’s identity. Over the years, a number of major exhibitions have been housed here, many of which draw in visitors in the hundreds of thousands. While the museum’s Perth site may soon be temporarily closing, there is still time to catch a few exhibitions before it does.
The Old Gaol
Known as the Old Perth Gaol when it was established in 1891, The Old Gaol is a significant part of the Western Australian Museum, and is one of the oldest standing buildings in the state. Today, the site has been transformed into an intimate vintage-inspired café, that serves up fresh cakes and pastries, a delicious range of lunchtime dishes, and a selection of beverages. Muse Café is open daily and makes for a great stop-off point while you are touring the exhibitions at the museum.
A History of the World in 100 Objects
An exhibition that comes from the British Museum, A History of the World in 100 Objects is a fascinating exploration of the last two million years of human history. From early stone tools to Javanese shadow puppets, this exhibition depicts the extraordinary way that humans throughout history have dealt with political, social and environmental issues, as well as the ingenuity and craftsmanship that this has resulted in.
Pineapples, Things and Stuff
Curated by the museum’s Anthropology and Archaeology department, Pineapples, Things and Stuff is an interactive trail around Perth’s Cultural Center that takes about an hour to complete. The trail map can be downloaded onto your phone, after which you set off and begin to explore the many ways that different materials enrich your life.
A Moment in Time
A collaboration between the Western Australian Museum and RTRFM, one of the city’s community radio stations, A Moment in Time is a once-in-a-lifetime performance of some of Western Australia’s most iconic songs. Featured throughout the museum, with everything from a silent disco to interactive storytelling, this event is intended to honor all that the museum has accomplished, ahead of its temporary closure before it re-opens as the New Museum.
The New Museum
The New Museum for Western Australia is one of the most exciting museum redevelopment projects occurring in the world today and is expected to be completed in 2020. While this may seem like a while to wait, the museum promises to be unlike anything that the world has seen, encouraging dialogue, debate and the sharing of experiences on topics that have led Western Australia to become the state that it is today.
From exploring the culture of the local Aboriginal people to discovering which dinosaurs once inhabited the state, to learning more about the flora and fauna that is native to Australia, the Western Australian Museum is definitely a must-visit when in Perth. Western Australia has a truly unique history and culture, and a visit to this museum is one of the best ways to learn all about it.