Skip to content


New exhibition explores the things we find hard to discard.

MUSEUM NEWS: 1 Dec 2021
Open 11 Dec – 12 Feb 2022

Have you ever donated something to a museum?  Had it been in your family for ages and did you feel too guilty to throw it out? Welcome to the wonderful world of local Museums and the Cairns Museum’s new, family-friendly exhibition ‘The Trouble with Parting’.

This exhibition explores objects commonly donated to the Cairns Museum and asks: what is it about them that makes people think they belong in a Museum? Why do so many people find these particular objects hard to discard?

And what about us? Why has this Museum collected multiples of the same object?

Objects are not discarded or donated in a vacuum. The value we place on objects reflects the world that shaped us. Museums are the same. What Museums acquire reflects changing fashions, politics and personalities.

‘The Trouble with Parting’ takes as look at the Cairns Museum’s most populous sub-collections and starts a conversation about what these objects reveal about us.

The process of researching and selecting the objects for the exhibition has revealed the importance of objects for holding memories. A sewing machine or a camera can connect us with people, places and life events. They can spark conversations and reminiscences between generations.  Who doesn’t want to show their kids a proper Polaroid camera? Or talk about how most of us used to know how to sew – especially if we wanted the latest fashions!

‘The Trouble with Parting’ will run from 11 Dec 2021 through to 12 March 2022. Admission is free with Museum entry.

Share this article

Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on linkedin
Share on email

Shopping cart

Book Now