THERE hasn’t been much to see at the Orange Regional Museum for the past month or so.
Visitors to the award-winning facility since February have been met with a closed wall, albeit covered with some very interesting images from Orange in years gone by when Summer Street was a dirt road and the former Myer building was still a new structure.
Sure, it’s meant a little less to look at, but the good news is that a little over a month from now, there will be a completely revitalised space with fresh material.
We talked to a lot of visitors in November 2016 when the Journeys: people, place, stories exhibition opened and the response at the time was positive, taking in Emma, the Cobb and Co coach, and reliving their childhoods through the fridges donated by Electrolux.
Exposure to our Chinese gold mining history at Ophir came later, exposing us to knowledge it’s fair to say most of us did not have.
A fresh exhibition will bring more of the same and help us to be a little more in tune with our shared history.
Paddock to Plate: a history of food and wine in Orange and district will be as close to home as it gets for a region that still depends on its produce.
Critics of the museum have previously shared frustrations about a lack of floor space, and a lack of storage is an acknowledged fact.
But the project was so long coming that when the money to build it finally arrived, the priority was, rightly, getting it built.
After all, a smaller building is better than none at all.
A former councillor pointed out in May the foyer area was originally intended for rotating exhibitions and other displays, but had been “hijacked” by the Orange Visitor Information Centre.
While the visitor information function is important for directing visitors to other attractions in the region and bolstering the industry as a whole, perhaps the issue should be revisited in times like this when the main area is closed to the public.
There is currently one small display case underneath the screens in the lobby, but a larger one or more of them could be all that’s needed.
Let’s also not forget the role multimedia plays in modern museums, which can be utilised within space constraints.
Either way, we look forward to the doors reopening.