The National Museum of Australia is a colourful landmark on the shores of Canberra's Lake Burley Griffin. Inspired by the idea of a jigsaw puzzle, the architecturally striking building represents the many tangled stories that make up Australia's history.
With 6,600 square metres of exhibition space, the NMA explores the key issues, people and events that have shaped the nation.
Screenmakers were involved with the original fitout of the museum when it opened in March 2001.
Entertaining and educating children forms a significant part of the museum’s permanent exhibitions. Screenmakers created the display outside The Story Place, a cosy nook in the roots of a boab tree (fig 1). All the boxes and panels were made from MDF and two-pack painted, screen-printed, then clear-coated. The child-sized images were digitally printed on vinyl then applied to the panel (fig 2).
Several mobile touch trolleys are available throughout the museum. The Mobile Museum (fig 3) is an inventive way for children to get hands-on with various artefacts and objects, wherever they are in the museum. The NMA supplied the trolleys to Screenmakers, which were two-pack painted blue with the NMA's logo router-cut out of 4.5mm acrylic. The acrylic was painted in the museum's colours and applied to the metalwork of the trolley.
Our Place is an interactive discovery display with four different cubby houses for children to explore (fig 4). Screenmakers created small binder displays containing clues for children to work out in which part of Australia the cubby would belong. The little books were made out of dibond, with router-cut holes for the binder (fig 5). The messages were then printed and clear-coated in sandtex for a long-lasting result.