Project Team Update

August 2019

Project Investigators:

Paul Ashton (UTS): Paul and Tracy Ireland have written a late primary school children’s book – Amazing Flights: A Century of Flying in Australia. Halstead Press will be publishing it in 2021. Paul will be presenting at the Heritage of the Air conference in November 2019: Title: ‘Maurice Guillaux, a Bleriot XI and the first aerial mail’. Abstract: Today Maurice Guillaux’s Bleriot XI hangs from a ceiling in the Powerhouse Museum. It seems largely ignored. It flew the first aerial mail run from Melbourne to Sydney in 1914, just before the outbreak of WWI. It was also full of other significant objects. This paper looks at how this object could be presented to children in creative non-fiction.

Prudence Black (University of Adelaide & USyd): Pru chaired the session ‘Global connections’ at the Aviation Cultures meeting in November 2018 and presented her paper ‘Local knowledge: Indigenous workers and the aviation industry’. She is currently working full time on a documentary about flight crew and the centenary of civil aviation to be screened on SBS in 2020. In September 2019, she is giving a conference paper about Indigenous workers in the aviation industry at the European Association for Studies of Australia ‘Alter/Native Spaces’ conference in Toulon, France.

Sally Brockwell (UC) and Annie Clarke (USyd): Sally and Annie travelled to Melbourne with Tracy Ireland in October 2018 to visit Airways and TAA Museums. This year they have been researching the Qantas Heritage Collection in Sydney with the help of curator, David Crotty.

Jane Ferguson (ANU): Jane presented at the Aviation Cultures meeting November 2018 ‘Flight school for the spirit of Myanmar: aerial nationalism and Burmese-Japanese cinematic collaboration in the 1930s’. In July 2019, Jane travelled to Miami, Florida to work on the PanAm archive. Jane has also published an article: Jane M. Ferguson and Arratee Ayuttacorn ‘Air Male: Exploring Flight Attendant Masculinities in North America and Thailand’ The Asia Pacific Journal of Anthropology’

Peter Hobbins (USyd): Peter chaired the session ‘Military aviation cultures’ at the Aviation Cultures meeting in November 2018. This June, he has completed his DECRA at University of Sydney and has since moved to Canberra to take up a position at the National Archives of Australia. Congratulations on your new job, Peter!

Brett Holman (UNE): Brett chaired the session ‘Unearthing Aviation’ at the Aviation Cultures meeting in November 2018 and presented the paper ‘Towards an emotional history of aviation; or, against airmindedness?’ He wrote a review for Honest History of Sir Ross Smith’s memoir of the 1919 Vimy flight from Britain to Australia. Brett also presented a paper about his aerial theatre research at the Australasian Association for European History conference at the University of Queensland in July 2019.

Tracy Ireland (UC): Congratulations to Tracy who was promoted to Professor in June! She travelled to Melbourne with Annie and Sally in October 2018 to visit Airways and TAA Museums. Tracy chaired the session “Communities of flight’ at the Aviation Cultures meeting in November 2018. Tracy and Jess went to the Theoretical Archaeology Group conference in New York in May 2019 and presented a paper ‘Out of Africa: the ruin of Southern Cross Minor’. They visited SFO Museum in San Francisco on their way back.

Tim Sherratt (UC): Tim has been gathering much useful information about what aviation material is available within Trove.

Jennifer Wilson (Qld Museum): Jen presented a paper in the Blitz session at the Aviation Cultures meeting in November 2018 ‘Queensland Museum’s aviation collections: an overview’.

Research Scholars:

Anna Gebels (USyd): Anna presented a paper at the Aviation Cultures meeting in November 2018 ‘Aviation ‒ Temoraʼs third golden ticket’.

Ashley Harrison (UC): Ashley presented in the Blitz session at the Aviation Cultures meeting in November 2018 ‘Civil aviation and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities’. Ashley recently completed her Introductory seminar at UC: ‘Flight across Country: Visualising connections of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and their communities to aviation in Australia’. Recently Ashley completed a short course in Ethnographic Filmmaking at the Granada Centre for Visual Anthropology and has just finished up the Indigenous Mapping Workshop (IMW) in Perth. At the IMW workshop, Ashley presented on her mapping project and learnt basic GIS software. She has also written a blog for the HotA website: ‘Aviation Objects: Mono-plane – sculpture of a single propeller aeroplane by Yvonne Koolmatrie’.

Christopher Holden (UC): Chris presented a paper in the Blitz Session at the Aviation Cultures meeting in November 2018, entitled ‘The role of information architecture in developing sustainable online cultural resource collections for aviation heritage’. Chris completed his introductory seminar at UC in April: ‘Information Architecture, Organisation Politics and the development of digital cultural heritage resource collections’. He is also our new webmaster.

Jana Samargis Woods (USyd): Jana presented at the Aviation Cultures meeting in November 2018 ‘Narrating technological innovation in the digital age’. She is currently on leave from her Masters course at University of Sydney.

Fiona Shanahan (UC): Fiona presented in the Blitz Session at Aviation Cultures in November 2018: ‘Civil aviation in Australia’s Top End’. Fiona has also written a blog for the HotA website: ‘Zen and the Art of Aircraft Maintenance’. Fiona was awarded a grant from the NT Government and Archives in June 2019 to support travel to further her research in various archives around Australia. She completed her confirmation seminar at UC in July 2019: ‘The Northern Territory’s Heritage of the Air’. She also attended the Air Traffic Services Centre (Melbourne) as part of a pilot information program and was credited for her work in a documentary on the history of aviation in the NT, which was released in July 2019.

Jessica Western (UC): Jess presented in the Blitz session of the Aviation Cultures meeting in November 2018: ‘Connecting communities with aviation heritage collections’. She also presented her introductory seminar at UC in April: ‘Creating community engagement with Australia’s aviation heritage’. Jess and Tracy presented a joint paper at the Theoretical Archaeology Group conference in Syracuse, New York: ‘Out of Africa: the ruin of Southern Cross Minor’ 2-5 May and visited SFO in San Francisco on their way home. Check Jess’ Airways blog ‘Still here available for rescue’.