Talking History Online: Windjammers

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Windjammers were enormous steel and iron sailing ships that transported South Australian grain during the final days of commercial sail. Sailing yearly from the Åland Islands, in the Finnish Baltic, Windjammers arrived in the South Australian summer to collect grain. They also collected young South Australians keen to learn the ropes. With small crews of 25-30 sailors, the youngest about 13 years old, skilled Captains sailed east and south passing through the tumultuous seas of Cape Horn where their ships, 100 metres long, rode waves that loomed like walls of water.

Join Dr Adam Paterson and Dr Andrew Yip as they set sail through the history of windjammers in South Australian waters, delving into the development of the exhibition and bringing the final age of sail into the 21st century through the creation of an immersive and interactive cinema experience. The installation draws on documents and objects in the SA Maritime Museum Collection, creating an interactive environment with a sense of linked authenticity.

This free public lecture is part of the History Trust’s Talking History series.

Lecture will commence at 5.30pm (ACDT) on Zoom. There will be a short Q&A following the lecture.

Dr Adam Paterson is curator at the South Australian Maritime Museum and Adjunct Associate Lecturer, Archaeology, Flinders University of South Australia. An historical archaeologist his research interests include the role that class and expertise play in the preservation of cultural heritage, Indigenous participation and representation in museums, and the impact of digital technologies on heritage interpretation and engagement. Adam has contributed to the development of numerous digital interactives at the SA Maritime Museum ranging from AR mobile device apps to large-scale immersive experiences, the most recent of which features in the new core gallery, Windjammers.

Dr Andrew Yip researches applications for immersive visualisation and experimental digital technologies to the preservation and interpretation of important cultural heritage sites, collections and museums. His interests concern how we can use new media platforms to create new, embodied sensory experiences that allow us to understand heritage in innovative ways. Andrew lectures at the University of New South Wales, Sydney. He was previously Assistant Professor of Immersive Media at Coventry University and a research fellow at the iCinema Centre for Interactive Cinema Research and the Laboratory for Innovation in Galleries, Libraries, Archives and Museums, both at UNSW.