Sunday, February 5, 2012

Deady Or Not, Here I Come

The WA museum is pretty great. I've been visiting with my family since I was very small (no entry fee plus bonus air conditioning made it our parents' favourite excursion), so many of the exhibits seem like old friends.

There have been various refurbishments over the years, but my favourites are still there: namely, the taxidermy zoo, skeleton collection, and an assortment of once-living things pickled in jars.

Yes my favourite things are all dead. It is a museum, after all.

One of the best new additions is the huge dinosaur in the lobby, which was painstakingly created by museum staff.

For some reason I neglected to take a full body shot, so it's hard to see how big it really is. Too obsessed with the small details, as usual. I will go back sometime soon and take more pics. Or you can go see it yourself... if you dare!

My main reason for visiting was to catch the Extraordinary Stories exhibition before it finished today.

This exhibit features a variety of British Museum artifacts, from million-year-old tools to more contemporary Maori and Aboriginal art. The whole thing was fascinating. I didn't take many photographs as the light was kept dim to preserve the items, however there were a couple that caught my eye in particular.

Cristovao Canhavato's throne of weapons, for instance:

If you can make out the quote below, the artist explains that the smiley faces in the chair were actually incidental features of the guns themselves. Strange to find happy faces on killing machines.

The other piece that caught my eye was near the end of the exhibit (which was organised in chronological order): a treasure box made by the Haida people of the West Coast of Canada.

I especially like the origin story accompanying the box, which features a secretive old man, a shape shifting raven and a daring heist.

If you happen to live in Perth and haven't seen Extraordinary Stories yet, you have until 5pm this afternoon to rectify that situation. Hurry! A few more hours, then most of these goodies will be shipped back to the motherland.

Of course, there are always other things to look at in Perth. Like my friend the urban cactus:

Or... this:


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