Ancient Aboriginal artefacts on display at Warrnambool Art Gallery

Rob Lowe senior with some of the items on display at the Warrnambool Art Gallery. 140724LP10 Picture: LEANNE PICKETT

Rob Lowe senior with some of the items on display at the Warrnambool Art Gallery. 140724LP10 Picture: LEANNE PICKETT

INDIGENOUS artefacts dating back tens of thousands of years are in the spotlight at the Warrnambool Art Gallery. 

Stone axe heads, spear heads, digging sticks, boomerangs from the gallery’s collection, as well as some from Aboriginal elder Rob Lowe senior are taking pride of place in the gallery. 

Mr Lowe said some of the items on display hadn’t been seen for many years. 

“It’s good to see them out and on display again. It helps people understand the indigenous history of the area,” he said. 

“Most of the artefacts are from the local area, from places like Killarney, Tower Hill and Southern Cross.

“I would say some of them date back 10,000 years. It’s good to have the traditional stuff on show.” 

Gallery collection registrar Agostina Hawkins said many of the items were from the Warrnambool Museum collection, which dates back to the late 1800s. 

“A lot of the pieces are from Joseph Archibald’s original collection,” she said. 

“Many of them were given to Archibald by a drover from the Tower Hill area who took cattle to the Queensland-New South Wales border and, along the way, was given various items from Aboriginal people. 

“There are other items that have come from various donors as well as items from Rob’s collection and replica items he has made himself.”

Ms Hawkins said school groups were encouraged to come into the gallery  and talks could be arranged. 

“It’s a great exhibition because it gives two pieces of history — how the items came into the museum collection and the indigenous history behind each of the items,” she said. 

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