Construction firm FDC will build the new six storey 7600m2 development, designed by Sydney architects Johnson Pilton Walker. It will house the University’s Macleay, Nicholson and University Art Gallery collections and make possible the showcasing of some of Australia’s most significant artistic, scientific and archaeological artefacts.
I’ve been very fortunate in my career and I believe that with good fortune comes a duty to give back and support suitable causes, particularly in the cultural and education sector.
Commenting on the start of the building Dr Chau said: “I’ve been very fortunate in my career and I believe that with good fortune comes a duty to give back and support suitable causes, particularly in the cultural and education sector.”
He observed that the University’s Chinese collection will be featured in the museum and commented on the importance of cultural exchange in building relationships between countries.
“Through understanding the culture and history of other countries we get a better appreciation of each other and our world. The university’s initiative to build this museum as a part of a cultural community and to share its important collections with today’s students is a service to the leaders of tomorrow.”
“In our modern globalised world, appreciation of culture and history is essential and I look forward to hearing about the museum as the university’s collection continues to grow and develop over the coming years.”
Dr Chau also mentioned how pleased he was that, as well being an invaluable resource for academics and students, the museum’s free admission policy would ensure access by the broader community.
The museum will enable the University to display a far greater number of the more than 450,000 objects estimated to be in the three main collections, including Australia’s largest collection of antiquities. Key works from the Power Collection will also be on display.
This is a place where visitors, students and researchers will be able to explore all it means to enjoy the riches of a varied cultural tradition.
The museum will include a gallery, exhibition and display spaces including a large temporary exhibition gallery space, conservation lab, workshop areas and landscaped outdoor areas with courtyards, gathering spaces and sculptures. It will support cultural and scientific enquiry and provide a new benchmark for cross-disciplinary teaching and learning through exhibitions and museum collections.
Dr Michael Spence, Vice-Chancellor and Principal of the University of Sydney expressed his gratitude for Dr Chau’s understanding of the University’s vision for its future.
“This is a place where visitors, students and researchers will be able to explore all it means to enjoy the riches of a varied cultural tradition.”
“By supporting this project you have made a very important contribution to supporting the culture of our city and of our nation.”
The museum is also supported by generous donations from the Ian Potter Foundation, Nelson Meers Foundation and Penelope Seidler, all alumni of the University of Sydney.
The project is expected to be completed by February 2020.