Our stories

Pyramids and Sphinx, Egypt, H2002.80/6

Travel guides for the discerning traveller

October 1, 2018

Our stories:

When you step outside your comfort zone to explore the world, suddenly a little book is the only safety blanket you’ve got. Whether the iconic red bindings of a Murray or Baedeker, or a dogeared Lonely Planet, travel guides have been clutched in the hands of discerning travellers the world over. Discover their varied forms in our collection.

Banned books

Banned books

September 26, 2018

Arts & literature, Our stories:

Throughout history, when those in power have felt threatened by the ‘dangerous’ ideas contained in the pages of books, the offending books have been banned, stripped from shelves, and even burned. But censorship isn’t just a thing of the past. Take a look at prohibited and censored books, old and new.

Illustrated children’s books: Kay Nielsen (1886-1957)

Illustrated children’s books: Kay Nielsen (1886-1957)

September 10, 2018

Arts & literature, Our stories:

Kay Nielsen’s delicate illustrations combined the exquisite motifs of the Art Nouveau movement with oriental influences. The elaborate, decorative artworks bring brilliant colour tinged with a hint of eeriness to the pages of children’s fairy tales.

Australia’s golden age of cycling

Australia’s golden age of cycling

July 20, 2018

Exhibitions, Our stories, People & professions:

Cheering echoed throughout the streets of Sydney in November 1937 as some 60,000 people gathered along the last 80 kilometres of Hubert Opperman’s epic trans-continental ride. Once as famous as cricketer Don Bradman, endurance cyclist ‘Oppy’ is currently featured in the Changing face of Victoria exhibition. Discover objects from his career, loaned to us by Museums Victoria.

Empress Josephine and the last emu

Empress Josephine and the last emu

July 16, 2018

Our stories:

In France, in 1822, the last surviving Australian dwarf emus died. The emus had made the unlikely journey from their their homes on Kangaroo and King Islands to the splendid gardens of Empress Josephine Bonaparte’s Malmaison.

Books celebrating NAIDOC Week 2018

Books celebrating NAIDOC Week 2018

July 12, 2018

Our stories:

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Island women empower past generations and pave the way for future generations of Indigenous Australians. This selection of recent books by Indigenous Australian women reflects the literary achievements of Indigenous women and their gift of empowerment to children.

fairy The babes asleep in the wood

Early history of movable and pop-up books

July 3, 2018

Arts & literature, Our stories:

Pop-up books enthral readers for many reasons: their ingenuity, their beauty, and because they challenge the two-dimensional nature of printed books. Explore the range of paper engineering mechanisms that have been used in books for more than 700 years.

NAIDOC Week 2018: ‘Because of her, we can!’ ebooks

NAIDOC Week 2018: ‘Because of her, we can!’ ebooks

July 3, 2018

Our stories:

This NAIDOC Week, be inspired by stories and voices of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women, available as ebooks. Whether you live in Melbourne or Manangatang, log in from home with your State Library card number and start reading.

An assortment of gadgetry and materials used in the Wolbers workshop

The game changer: advances in paper conservation

June 28, 2018

Our stories:

Paper is inherently fragile and unforgiving. Our Conservation team, faced with a variety of stains resulting from light damage, poor storage, natural ageing and tape use, work to reduce the rate of deterioration and lengthen the life of paper collection items. Learn about new methods of washing and stain reduction that have recently transformed their work with paper objects.

The dais in the dome

The dais in the dome

June 25, 2018

Our stories, Such was life:

Once upon a time a staff member sat in the dais in the La Trobe Reading Room, watching over any chattering public. I asked two long term SLV librarians how this used to work.