The Weirdest of the Weird – Exhibition and movies

Rare Books and Special Collections staff have trawled the comic universes to present you with The Weirdest of the Weird – a selection of the most puzzling, convoluted, underwhelming, and bizarre comic heroes of all time. Meet Ragman, Infectious Lass, Skateman, Snowflame, and a host of intriguing others in our latest exhibition. Skateman in Action

Rest assured, with your brains and the Library’s science fiction collection, we’ve got a kazillion themes to base your thesis on! But be warned, with over 1,500 comic titles from the 1930s to the 1980s you may be shocked at how many super heroes it takes to protect the cosmos…

Visit The Weirdest of the Weird exhibition at:

Level 3 main corridor, Fisher Library

Exhibition space, SciTech Library


#RareBooks #usydlibrary #comix #superheros #FisherLibrary #SciTechLibrary

Exhibition: The life and music of Tommy Tycho

The Conservatorium Library showcases researcher and PhD candidate Samuel Cottell’s The Life and Music of Tommy Tycho in a newly opened exhibition. View Tommy Tycho’s career, spanning radio, television and performances at the newly opened Sydney Opera House (in 1973), the opening of the Sydney Entertainment Centre (1983) and many more live concerts and performances.

Tommy Tycho
Tommy Tycho

Curated by Samuel Cottell (PhD)

When: 10 August – 10 October 2016

Where: Conservatorium of Music Library, Glass Space & Glass Case

Further features of the exhibition include key examples of Tycho’s musical output, featuring LP and 45’ recordings, samples of his handwritten sheet music (arrangements and compositions); commercial sheet music, trade journals, concert programs, photographs of Tommy Tycho as well video footage of him performing with the Queensland Symphony Orchestra on the ABC music program, My Music.

Gain a deeper understanding of Tycho’s musical style, output and contribution to Australian music from 1951 when he first arrived in Australia to 2007, when he received an Honorary Doctor of Music from the University of Sydney.

The curator

Samuel Cottell (PhD) focuses his research on the mediation and consumption of ‘light music’ in Australia from 1951-1983. Following the life and career of Tommy Tycho his research addresses a central theme of Tycho’s life; adaptability.


Exhibition: ‘Objects in the Mirror’

Come and check out the final 2016 installment of our Ex Libris Fisherarium Series featuring students from the Sydney College of the Arts curated by Associate Professor Michael Goldberg.

When: 20 June – 31 December 2016

Where: Fisher Library F03; Levels 2,3, and 4

This exhibition features Alex GAWRONSKI and Jelena TELECKI. ExLibris Fisherarium June 2016: Alex Gawronski setting up the exhibitionIt consists of a series of 10 book titles removed from their original contexts. Each title was chosen for its uncanny or humorous connotations once removed from its wider context. Considered collectively, these titles suggest a type of quasi-Dadaist poetry whose combined effect hints at alternative critical, playful and/or possibly even pataphysical, readings.

Graphically the original layout of each book title has been retained although now each has been rendered in watercolour as a ‘painting’. These works further reference the importance of text in contemporary art and artists as diverse as Ed Ruscha and Marcel Broodthaers. Accompanying these text works are figurative paintings by Jelena Telecki. These all respond to the book titles. Together the appropriated titles and their figurative interpretations, establish an open dialogue of fairly infinite suggestability.

‘Objects in the Mirror…’ (may be closer than they appear – as the warning goes) speaks of how texts and images continually interpolate one another while remaining fundamentally differentiated. The juxtaposition of text and image in this instance may be considered a type of improvisation that draws out the latent possibilities concealed behind the most ordinary words and the words that underlie the most stubbornly elusive representations.

Exhibition: From Phlogiston to Oxygen

Where: SciTech Library exhibition spaceSciTech exhibtion

When: during SciTech opening hours

Before the discovery of oxygen, a substance called phlogiston was thought to exist. As scientists experimented on the substances of air, they published their accounts and theories. Some of these publications are now on display at the SciTech Library. Works by the brilliant Robert Boyle; “Hard Luck” Scheele; the philogistically faithful Richard Kirwan; and the first to publish on oxygen, Joseph Priestley and Antoine Lavoisier. By 1789 oxygen was firmly placed on the basic table of elements.

contact: Julie Price P: +61 2 9114 2321

Exhibition: Striking Chords


Sounds and stories from the Rare Music collection

The image on the poster/postcard is from Raymond Hanson’s manuscript sketches for The Immortal Touch (c. 1970s). Raymond Hanson (1913-1976) was a composer and music educator who taught composition at the Conservatorium from the late 1940s until the 1970s.
Raymond Hanson’s manuscript sketches for The Immortal Touch (c. 1970s).

When: 19 May to 30 November 2016

Where: Fisher Library F03; Level 1; Rare Books & Special Collections Reading Room

This exhibition is a celebration of the University Library’s Rare Music collection, on the occasion of its relocation from the Conservatorium Library to Fisher Rare Books & Special Collections.

When the NSW State Conservatorium of Music was officially opened on 6 May 1915, its stated aims were “providing tuition of a standard at least equal to that of the leading European Conservatoriums”. It would seem logical then that the Rare Music collection of Australia’s first dedicated music education institution be concentrated around two main cultural waypoints: the European classical music tradition that the Conservatorium sought to transmit, and the Australian musical culture that developed from this foundation.

These two areas of strength provide natural entry points for exploring this varied and intriguing collection. They provide the framework for this exhibition, the aim of which is to showcase not only the objects themselves, but the continuation of their stories through ongoing scholarship and engagement.

#Sydney_library #RareBooks #RareMusic

HeadOn photo exhibition: Mongolian Youth

Categories: Exhibitions, Library
Comments: Comments Off
Published on: 26 April 2016


“It’s all going so fast,”sighs Gerelkhuu, a 26 year old artist living in Ulaanbaatar. “We have to remember who we are and to be careful not to lose our soul. If we don’t know who we are, we don’t know where we’ll go.”

When: 26 April – 30 May 2016

During a live performance of the rock band Mohanik, interior designer Enerel, 26, paints on a wall of the Glamour art gallery in downtown UB. In 2013, Enerel who used to live and study for 10 years in the US decided it was time to return to Mongolia. “More and more people are coming back” she said “bringing back what they learned abroad”.
During a live performance of the rock band Mohanik, interior designer Enerel, 26, paints on a wall of the Glamour art gallery in downtown UB. In 2013, Enerel who used to live and study for 10 years in the US decided it was time to return to Mongolia. “More and more people are coming back” she said “bringing back what they learned abroad”.

Where: Fisher Library Level 2 Corridor 208

Based in Brussels, Belgium, Marika Dee is a self-taught freelance documentary photographer. Originally, she worked as a jurist in international law and only discovered photography at a later age.
Her work explores social issues and youth culture.

As Mongolia is changing at a frantic pace and finding itself at the forefront of globalisation, its young urban generation is trying to keep up and figure out its identity.

Over the last few years Mongolia has experienced an unprecedented economic growth, driven by the massive development of mineral mining. With half of Mongolia’s 2.8 million living in the country’s capital and largest city Ulaanbaatar and more than half of the national population under the age of 30, the country has a young and increasingly urban population.

Almost 25 years after the democratic revolution that ended the communist era when Mongolia was a satellite state of the Soviet Union, a whole country is changing and its young urban generation is searching for an identity, trying to negotiate the difficult balance between the forces of globalization and the preservation of tradition.

If you like this exhibition, why not check out the HeadOn exhibition in the Law Library foyer on clouds (Photos by Daniel Arnaldi)

#headon #usydlibrary #mongolia #FisherLibrary

HeadOn photo exhibition: Clouds


“To look at a cloud is often to look into a world where impressions suggest themselves like persistent dreams and memories, you see what you think is there, what your memory is telling you it is, rather than just seeing what is there.” Daniel Arnaldi (photographer)

When: 26 April – 30 May 2016Daniel Arnaldi : Clouds

Where: Herbert Freehills Law Library Foyer

Daniel Arnaldi’s work explores the human condition through portraiture, landscape and still life using the medium of photography to illustrate the range of inner states of our consciousness.

As I was editing these images for the show I realised they reflected the process that I’ve gone through and by extension a process that everyone going through a transformative phase might experience, they have been broken up into 3 subsets each one with its own title to reflect the various stages of such transformations.

The beginning of an awareness often coming in the form of a shock, violent, fiery, spectacular but also foreboding and threatening.

An uncomfortable stage where we have to come to terms and process new information that can sometimes be difficult. Feelings of isolation, depression, melancholy can be part of this process, sometimes all you can do is just ride it out, the colours in this particular series have been intentionally chosen for this effect.

As the name suggests a more energised stage tempered with focus, clarity and calmness. The blues invoking a feeling of tranquility while the more defined structure of the clouds still expressing strength. In all these photos clouds are still wide open to interpretation by the viewer, I hope that you let these photos be an entry point into your own inner journey of reflection, memory and emotion.

If you like this exhibition, why not check out the HeadOn exhibition in Fisher Level 2 about Mongolian Youth (Photos by Marika Dee)

#headon #Usydlibrary #FisherLibrary

Exhibition and Event: Silent Tears


“Photography has a well-regarded role for bringing the plight of silent victims into focus, providing a powerful opportunity for understanding and action. Bearing witness to the realities of these twelve women’s lives should be uncomfortable and challenging for audiences,” Belinda Mason

'Now many decades on, she was able to reveal for the first time the ongoing sexual violence she endured as a child with physical disability. She is no longer threatened by the perpetrator, yet the psychological trauma forces her to be anonymous in this project and unlike other participants reveal no further information about her experience. She is one of the many who still are trying to make sense of, and come to terms with, what happened to them, before they feel they can speak out.” -Belinda Mason with permission from the participant
photo by Belinda Mason

When: 1 March – 22 April 2016

Where: Herbert Freehills Law Library; New Sydney Law School Building F10

Accessibility information:

Belinda Mason’s Silent Tears reveals twelve Australian women’s haunting stories of disability and violence using saturated water to symbolise the streams of tears these survivors have silently endured.

Each participant has either experienced violence because they have disability, or has acquired a impairment, as a result of violence. Theirs is a powerful and compelling story of psychological, physical, emotional, economic, and cultural violence. The participants of the exhibition share their stories of domestic violence, forced sterilisation, psychological trauma, neglect and violence within institutions, and by family members.

“The power of Silent Tears lies in the hands of those who participate in it. Without stories there is silence.

“With the impact of my son’s death, and after having the girls and then a still born, five days before its born, and the relationship I was in with my ex-partner was violent all the time. I was treated not like a person; to me it was like an animal. I couldn’t handle it, being bashed all the time, getting cheated on by someone O loved so much. I just got tired of all that and I turned to drugs. Now as a person I know I can overcome all that life throws at me.” – Anonymous, Australia 2015
photo by Belinda Mason

Without stories told, we are voiceless. Without our stories heard, we are invisible. It is even harder when the stories are hard to hear and impossible to imagine,” said Belinda Mason.

Silent Tears is the result of three artist’s exploration of 12 women’s stories using a variety of photographic techniques and multi-media. Led by Mason, and supported by artists Dieter Kiernan (video) and Margherita Coppolino (documentary photography), audiences are immersed in the participant’s experiences to stimulate a deeper understanding of the diversity of violence, discrimination and survival.


Belinda Mason: Website:


Join us for a special presentation by two of the artists, Belinda Mason and Denise Beckwith followed by a panel discussion on the issues.

Wednesday 6 April
7 to 8.30pm
Law School Foyer
Level 2, Sydney Law School
Eastern Avenue
University of SydneyThe event is free, but registration is required

#silenttears #sydney_library

Exhibition: Laugh Lines and Other Distractions


Comics are a natural way to communicate. If you can draw a picture, you can tell a story.

By Julie Price

When: 8 February – 31 August 2016

Where: Fisher Library F03; Level 2 Exhibition spaceLaughLine-Poster-Final_sm

Everybody knows what a comic is. We’ve all read them, laughed at them and enjoyed them. A few well-chosen images can transport meaning across language barriers.

Threads of humour are teased from many situations: political circuses; the foibles of gender; even war, as soldiers entertaining themselves find domestic appreciation for larrikin humour. So many strands to spin a chuckle from be it an ocker, a Major, a gumnut, the Little Boy from Manly; all have made Australians laugh through the years. What was true throughout the nineteenth and twentieth centuries holds true now – any newspaper that wants to be taken seriously simply must run a cartoon or two.

Enquiries: Rare Books and Special Collections P: +(61) 2 9351 2992

#RareBooks #Humour #Sydney_library

Ex Libris Fisherarium: Persons of Interest


PhD candidate Glenn Wallace and UNSWAD academic Dr Katherine Moline give us an intriguing insight into the machinations of ASIO and the Cold War era, writes Dr Michael Goldberg.

When: 2 November 2015 – 2 December 2015

Where: Fisher Library F03 Levels 2,3, and 4

Personsofinterest_pic1For over 40 years, Australia’s Security and Intelligence Organisation (ASIO) seized books that were deemed subversive in raids on the homes of people suspected of conspiracy. In recent years ASIO files documenting the activities of certain ‘Persons of Interest’ have been released.

For this iteration of Ex Libris Fisherarium, ‘Era of Surveillance’ maps where confiscated texts are located in Fisher Library. Viewers are invited to explore the Library as a space where art, architecture, politics, knowledge and power converge.

Era of surveillance: Persons of interest / Family
Artists: Katherine Moline and Glenn Wallace




#Sydney_library #ExLibrisFisherarium

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