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What's on at the State Library South Australia December 2019

Home > Adelaide > Art | Exhibitions | Free | Libraries | Tours
by Annette Vandersluis (subscribe)
I love to travel and some time ago discovered I also love to write, combine this with my husband's photography and we get to share it all with you. Please visit us at www.facebook.com/brucevandersluisimages
Published November 30th 2019
State Library Fun
While December is officially summer, here in Adelaide we still seem to be experiencing a mix of weather from cool to cold and warm and sunny. However, the State Library of South Australia provides a haven whatever the weather with a wealth of indoor events, exhibitions and tours to enjoy with new options becoming available all the time.

All year-round, you can join a tour such as Make Yourself at Home, Behind the Scenes: Care and Repair, Salt in Your Eyes or Your History Heartlands to learn and hear about what the State Library does, how it grew to be what it is and the history of South Australia.

Each month, the State Library also offers a range of events and exhibitions, generally free or for a small contribution. Following is what is on offer for December 2019.

Heroes of the Skies
Dates: 1 November 2019 to 5 April 2020
Times: Monday to Wednesday 10 am to 8pm, Thursday and Friday 10 am to 6 pm and Saturday and Sunday 10 am to 5 pm
Where: Treasures Wall
Cost: Free

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Photo: Ross Smith, circa 1920 (PRG 18/53/2) and Keith Smith, 1917 (PRG 18/5/11), State Library of South Australia


This exhibition is dedicated to the Smith Brothers and the Great Air Race of 1919 which was one by two of South Australia's favourite sons, Captain Ross and Lieutenant Keith Smith.

Along with their mechanics, Sergeants Wally Shiers and Jim Bennett, the Smith brothers were the first Australian airmen to fly from England to Australia in a Vickers Vimy bomber, achieved in just 28 days.

Follow the lives of the Smith family from Mutooroo Station to World War One and experience the public response to the tragic death of Sir Ross in an air crash in 1922.

Experience the excitement of the race and its aftermath through the State Library collections and items on loan from museums, private collections and other libraries.

Located on the Treasurers Wall, see the log-book and certificate of worthiness of the Vickers Vimy, notebooks kept by the Smith brothers, a pocket compass, a magneto from the engine, and a piece of Vimy aircraft fabric.

As part of these celebrations, you can also view the personal papers of Sir Ross and Sir Keith Smith on the Digital Collections website.

Professor Henderson's Department of Historical Records
Dates: 15 July to 31 December 2019
Times: 10 am to 5 pm daily. Closed public holidays.
Where: Institute Building
Cost: Free

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Photo: State Library of South Australia


If you haven't already seen this exhibition, this is the final month.

Discover the treasures and stories from the nation's oldest Government archive in the Institute Building.

Made possible by Professor George C Henderson, the Department of Historical Records was established. George Henry Pitt and Mabel Hardy, the first Government Archivists of Australia were appointed on 1 February 1919. Together, they were to identify, preserve and make accessible official records in the newly established South Australian Archives Department. The State Records of South Australia now hold over 13 million official records.

Ankkinyi Apparr, Ankkinyi Magnurr, Tarnanthi Festival
Dates: 18 October 2019 to 25 January 2020
Times: Monday to Wednesday 9 am to 7.45 pm, Thursday and Friday 9 am to 5.45 pm and Saturday and Sunday 9 am to 4.45 pm. Closed public holidays.
Where: State Library Gallery
Cost: Free

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Photo: Heather Napururla Anderson, Skin Names. State Library of South Australia


Part of the 2019 Tarnanthi Festival of Contemporary Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Art, this exhibition celebrates the work of artists Gladys Anderson, Heather Anderson, Lindy Brody, Ruth Dawson, Penny Kelly, Susannah Nelson and Joseph Williams, bringing together stories, language and art.

This multi-modal exhibition sees historic audio recordings play alongside paintings and contemporary videos evoking the sounds and colours of Warumungu Country.

The exhibition subtitled Our Language, Our Designs is curated by Sandra Morrison Nangali, Rosemary Plummer Narrurlu and linguist Samantha Disbray.

The State Library now has a new online store making shopping easy for those looking for a bespoke gift for someone special or even if you are looking for something a little different for your home.

Photo: State Library of South Australia


The new store features items from the State Library collections and a range of products including home décor, wall art, stationery, clothing, bags and more. Visit the website to see the range of products available.

You can reach the State Library by bus or train with bus stops close by near the War Memorial on North Terrace and the Adelaide Train Station just a short stroll away. Free trams run regularly between the train station and the Art Gallery right next to the Library.

Parking is available at Wilson's Adelaide Central car park, 225 North Terrace and there is paid metered street parking along Kintore Avenue and Victoria Drive.

Wheelchair and stroller access to the Library is available.

The State Library South Australia is open Monday to Wednesday from 10 am to 8 pm, Thursday and Friday 10 am to 6 pm and Saturday and Sunday 10 am to 5 pm. The Library is not open on public holidays.
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Why? Whatever the weather, the State Library has something for everyone.
When: 1 - 31 December 2019
Phone: 08 8207 7250
Where: North Terrace, Adelaide
Cost: Free entry
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