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Tabeduck by Robert Neill

Tabeduck by Robert Neill, Drawing no. 58

Entangled Knowledges

Tabeduck by Robert Neill, Drawing no. 58

Entangled Knowledges aims to highlight Menang Nyungar knowledge embedded in a historical fish collection held at National Museums Scotland and return this knowledge to the Menang community in Western Australia.

Last updated: 7 December 2022

About the project

By working in a cross-sector, collaborative and Indigenous-governed team, the project will enrich and re-frame the understanding of this collection in the Museum. It will unearth Indigenous taxonomic practices, produce new histories of biocultural collections and develop a model for participatory cross-cultural collaborations.

In 1841 when based in Albany, Western Australia, Edinburgh-born Assistant Comissary-General Robert Neill made a collection of fishes and mammal specimens, sketches and Menang objects that are now held at National Museums Scotland and the Natural History Museum. Workshops will be held on Indigenous land to research and discuss these collections from different perspectives. This research will be used by museum partners to ensure wide cross-sector and community engagement with the project outcomes. The outputs will include an online digital platform to reassemble the collections, a public lecture and symposium, and a co-edited book.

Read a recent news story about the project.

Dried fish specimen

Dried fish specimen

Dried fish specimen

Project details

Project title

Entangled Knowledges: Kaartdijin, Science and History in the Robert Neill collection

Project active

2021 - 2024

Research theme

Scotland's Material Heritage, Identities and Cultural Contacts, Sustainability

Research sub-theme

Colonial histories and Legacies, Biocultural collections

Strategic priorities

Developing, preserving and increasing access to the National Collections, Strengthening and sharing collections knowledge and research, Reaching out to people across Scotland and the world, Taking action on climate change and environmental impact

Dr Tiffany Shellam, Chief Investigator, Deakin University

Professor Alistair Paterson, Chief Investigator, The University of Western Australia

Dr Shino Konishi, Chief Investigator, The University of Western Australia

Miss Shona Coyne, Partner Investigator, National Museum of Australia

Dr Glen Moore, Partner Investigator, Western Australian Museum

Dr Ali Clark, Partner Investigator, National Museums Scotland

Dr Ian Coates, Partner Investigator, National Museum of Australia

Dr Ross Chadwick, Partner Investigator, Western Australian Museum

Dr Andrew Kitchener, Partner Investigator, National Museums Scotland

Partner information

Funded by the Australian Research Council. Governed by the Albany Heritage Reference Group Aboriginal Corporation.

Deakin University Australia The University of Western Australia
Natural History Museum Australian Government - Australian Research Council
Albany Heritage Reference Group Aboriginal Corporation National Museum Australia
WA Museum - Boola Bardip - Many Stories City of Albany
Email icon Dr Ali Clark

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