A purpose-built $ 86 million facility in Adelaide will become the new home for South Australia’s significant cultural and artistic collections.
The new center will not be open to the public and will replace existing inadequate and dilapidated storage facilities which often put valuable parts at risk of damage.
Over 90% of South Australia’s cultural collections, worth around $ 1.2 billion, are in storage at any given time.
They are on display in rotation at state institutions including the Art Gallery of SA, the South Australian Museum, the History Trust of SA, and the State Library.
Included is South Australia’s extensive collection of Aboriginal artifacts, the largest and most comprehensive collection of Aboriginal cultural material in the world.
“This new facility will allow for a more collaborative approach between our cultural institutions and provide a place to safely protect South Australia’s collections,” Prime Minister Steven Marshall said.
“Storage is fundamental to the care and safeguard of the state’s cultural treasures, which in turn are fundamentally important to South Australians and our identity as a state.”
Indigenous Arts and Cultures Center Ambassador David Rathman said the journey to preserve, restore and safely store Indigenous cultural heritage has taken many years of advocacy.
“Today is the first step in enabling 30,000 irreplaceable pieces of our heritage to be housed in a state-of-the-art facility,” said Mr. Rathman.
“This world-class center will allow future generations to continue to appreciate the Indigenous collection, which dates back to the country’s 60,000 years of Indigenous history.
Work on the new facility is expected to be completed in early 2024 and construction will create more than 700 jobs.
It will store state collections in a temperature and humidity controlled environment, with integrated pest control, robust security, and specialized fire protection services.