Touring the museum on mobile – the new ANMM app

The Australian National Maritime museum's mobile app

Are you planning a visit to the Australian National Maritime Museum? You can now take a self-guided tour with our newly-released mobile app, built on the Google Cultural Institute platform. Users can swipe, scan and scroll their way through collection highlights as they wander in and around the museum, or use it to virtually explore our exhibitions from anywhere in the world.

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A new artificial reef at the Australian National Maritime Museum

James Hunter guides one of the Reef Balls.

James Hunter guides one of the Reef Balls under the Australian National Maritime Museum’s north wharf. Photo: Lee Graham.

Next time you visit the Australian National Maritime Museum, make sure you take a peek under the north wharf for a glimpse of our new artificial reef. Last week we installed a series of six Reef Balls® — purpose-built artificial reef habitats for sea creatures donated by the NSW Department of Primary Industries. They’re actually half-balls (hemispheres) and are hollow, with several small holes that provide shelter for fish and invertebrates. They’re made of concrete with a special additive that strengthens them, while lowering the pH to encourage the settlement and growth of marine organisms.

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Remembering submarine AE1: ‘…the ocean bed their tomb’

Artist’s view of the work in the museum basin, courtesy Warren Langley

Artist’s view of the work in the museum basin, courtesy Warren Langley Artist: Warren Langley Materials: stainless steel, LED lighting, PVC piping 2015. Supported by a grant from the Federal Government’s Anzac Centenary Arts and Culture Fund.

On 14 September 1914 the 55 metre submarine HMAS AE1 disappeared with all hands, 35 Australian and British sailors, while patrolling German waters off Duke of York Island in present day Papua New Guinea.

On 14 September this year, 101 years on, a major art installation will be unveiled at the Australian National Maritime Museum to commemorate the loss in a work entitled ‘…the ocean bed their tomb’. The work is currently under construction at the workshop of the artist Warren Langley where descendants of those officers and crew, submariners and naval historians gathered recently to view it.

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New Action Stations experience coming to Darling Harbour

Artist's impression of the ANMM's new Warship's Pavilion

Have you noticed the construction work outside the Australian National Maritime Museum in Darling Harbour? Work is well underway on our new Action Stations experience – an amazing visitor facility on the museum’s wharf between our ex-Navy submarine and destroyer, opening in November 2015.

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Endeavour goes to dry dock

HMB Endeavour in dry dock

Every two years, HMB Endeavour goes to dry dock for regular maintenance—part of the requirements to maintain its survey status. On 4 June, the crew took the ship through the Glebe Island Bridge and onto the synchrolift at the shipyard. With high tide well after sunset, the evolution was conducted safely and well after dark.

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Floating art galleries of Madura

Helmsman's 'pilothouse', perahu selerek, Pasean, Madura

Helmsman’s ‘pilothouse’, perahu selerek, Pasean, Madura. Jeffrey Mellefont 2015

Recent maritime research in the big archipelagic nation next door – Indonesia – reveals an explosion of creative expression among some traditional fishing communities that are turning hard-working, everyday timber vessels into floating art galleries. They’re combining older decorative traditions – usually linked to religious beliefs, ritual and magic – with modern influences from popular culture, and sometimes adding a dash of political or social commentary as well.

The brightest and most striking examples were observed on Madura, an island that lies just off north-east Java. A notable resurgence of the decorative arts was clearly under way there.

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Alan Bond (1938–2015) and some of his maritime connections

Endeavour Replica 2005

Endeavour replica pictured in 2005, the year HM Bark Endeavour Foundation transferred ownership of the vessel to the Australian National Maritime Museum.

This is not an obituary or eulogy but rather a note of recognition and acknowledgement of the man whose yachting and other nautical activities considerably influenced the maritime history of Australia. The Australian National Maritime Museum is connected to this history through objects in the National Maritime Collection and our management of the Endeavour replica. Continue reading

Palate and sea passages: wine tasting and conversation with the Captain of the Endeavour

For those with an appreciation of wine and tall ships, you can indulge both interests on Friday 26 June at the Australian National Maritime Museum.

Captain John Dikkenberg of our HMB Endeavour replica will impart first-hand accounts of his voyages on this popular ship while our friends Angove Family Winemakers share samples of their delicious wines.

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Oysters and their punts

The Clyde River oyster punt

The Clyde River oyster punt, 1970. Australian Register of Historic Vessels, HV000558

Oysters – a first choice on the menu for many people, and while enthusiasts have their favourite coastal spot that they swear has the best specimens, remember that someone has to do the hard work of farming them in shallow water. And for this they need a boat.

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Being a hero is all about timing: Oskar Speck’s kayak voyage

Oskar passport.  ANMM collection

Oskar Speck’s passport. ANMM collection

As I was examining the letters, journals, photographs and reports of Oskar Speck, as though they were parts of a giant jigsaw puzzle, I started piecing together the life and the incredible voyage of this intrepid German, who spent seven years and four months paddling a collapsible kayak from his native town of Altona in Hamburg all the way to Thursday Island in the Torres Strait.

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