Wednesday, 12 February 2020

The Johnston Collection presents "An Interior Life" exhibition

William Robert Johnston was a Melbourne based antique dealer and a collector of beautiful things from the age of eight, when his grandmother gave him a little teacup. As his collection grew, Johnston wanted to share these unusual and visually arresting items with the wider community. Upon his death in 1986, the not-for-profit museum, The Johnston Collection was established which comprises of 1,400 objects of mostly 17th century English furniture, paintings, ceramics and objet d’art.

Part of the charm of the Johnston Collection stems from its revolving door of guest curators over the years, which has included The Australian Ballet's Artistic Director David McAllister, milliner Richard Nylon, interior design studio Hecker Guthrie, and Barking Spider Visual Theatre company. These curators are offered the freedom to express their personal connection and response to what they display and how it is set up, giving people the chance to view these objects from different perspectives and ensures a great rotation of the collection.

What makes a visit to this museum a unique experience is that it is one of the few exhibition-houses in Australia to be unfettered by ropes and barriers and in 2020, the Collection celebrates its 30th year of being open to the public. Its new exhibition, An Interior Life, will offer a more “traditional” interpretation of Johnston’s vast and eclectic collection and allow visitors to see work by one of the greatest printmakers of the 18th Century Giovanni Battista, a typewriter by its iconic founder Hidalgo Moya, and an exquisite longcase clock by one of the utmost inventors of the 18th Century, Henry Hindle.

"House of Dreams" curated by Barking Spider Visual Theatre
All visitors are met at The Pullman on The Park hotel by a courtesy bus for the short minute drive to the Museum to begin their tour of An Interior Life. They are then guided through the museum while enjoying exotic stories of travel and tales of the past that lies behind these pieces. 

Exploring Fairhall is like being transported to another time, perhaps even to a place where time does not exist. It's an escape from time and an opportunity to appreciate the beauty that exists around us. There are always wonderful and captivating histories to hear about objects you wouldn't have thought existed, and the entire area is full of surprises just waiting to be discovered.

Meet: All visitors must arrive via The Johnston Collection courtesy bus with pick-up at the Pullman Melbourne on the Park, 192 Wellington Parade, East Melbourne.
Visitors can opt to return to The Pullman on the Park in by courtesy bus at the completion of their visit.
Season: 17 February until 22 September 
Tickets: Full: $25 | Concession: $23
Bookings: The Johnston Collection - essential 

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