21 Oct 2021 - 27 Feb 2022
Open Tuesdays to Sundays and Bank holidays
The National Museum of Australia’s award-winning exhibition comes to The Box this autumn/winter. Experience ancient stories from the world’s oldest continuing culture, told through more than 300 paintings and objects by over 100 different artists. Take an epic journey that crosses three states, three deserts and some 500,000 square kilometres. With ceramics, paintings, sculpture, installation and film, come and immerse yourself in an exhibition that uses the power of art and culture to connect us across time zones and international borders.
On display across a number of spaces at The Box and in The Levinsky Gallery at the University of Plymouth, in partnership with The Arts Institute. Please note: opening hours in The Levinsky Gallery are 10am-5pm Tues-Fri and 12pm-5pm Sat and Sun.
'An epic, pioneering show’ - The Times
‘A vivid treat for the eye’ - The Guardian
'A peerless exhibition of Aboriginal art' - Widewalls
'A blockbuster exhibition of Aboriginal art, history, science and belief' - Museum Crush
Please note: there are some projections in this exhibition, especially in the North Hall on the ground floor, the information area on our first floor and the Dome on Tavistock Place, that may be challenging for visitors with neurodiverse conditions. For more information and images visit our Access page.
'Songlines: Tracking the Seven Sisters' has been entirely conceived and curated by a team of First Australians, led by Margo Neale, Senior Indigenous Curator at the National Museum of Australia and custodial elders from across the Central and Western Deserts of Australia.
Central to the exhibition are the Seven Sisters Dreaming stories – ancient creation sagas of the Australian continent - and the aim to preserve them for future generations.
The immersive exhibition travels from west to east: from the Western Australian coast to the APY Lands in the east, using contemporary art, performance and song to re-animate traditional stories, photography, multimedia and the world’s highest-resolution seven-metre-wide travelling dome which will transport you to places deep in the desert.
'Songlines: Tracking the Seven Sisters' is part of the UK/Australia Season 2021-22 - a major programme of cultural exchange taking place across the two nations throughout this year and next.
Delve into the exhibition in more detail before or after you visit with our blog posts.
Songlines are a map of the land, a pathway for spiritual, cultural, political and historical truths – and so much more. Songlines crisscross the land, creating a network of stories that ‘map’ the Australian continent by linking narratives to geographical features. It's through Songlines that Aboriginal people can locate and learn from significant sites and pass on laws, ways of living and moral codes to the next generation.
Image: Seven Sisters Songline 1994 by Josephine Mick, Ninuku Arts © the artist/Copyright Agency 2020 Image: National Museum of Australia