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Maps of the Pacific

  • Past Exhibition

<p>Explore the beauty, art and science of mapping across three centuries through an exhibition of maps, charts, atlases and globes featuring the Pacific, held in the Library's magnificent&nbsp;collection.</p>

Exhibition Information

to
Past Exhibition
Free
Exhibition Galleries

1 Shakespeare Place
Sydney NSW 2000
Australia
+61 2 9273 1414

Explore the beauty, art and science of mapping across three centuries through an exhibition of maps, charts, atlases and globes featuring the Pacific, held in the Library's magnificent collection.

The Pacific Ocean is the largest and deepest ocean on earth, extending from the Arctic Ocean in the north to the Southern Ocean in the south, bounded by the continents of Asia and Australia in the west and the Americas in the east. This vast ocean was named the Pacific by the Portuguese explorer Ferdinand Magellan in 1520, despite having been explored and inhabited thousands of years earlier.

Another three centuries passed before this expanse would be accurately mapped and understood by Europeans, identifying over 20,000 islands and communities across more than 155 million square kilometres. This exhibition traces the European mapping of the Pacific across the centuries — an endeavour that elevated the science and art of European mapmaking. Redrawing the map of the world ultimately facilitated an era of brutal colonisation and dispossession for many Pacific First Nations communities.

Maps of the Pacific is presented with support from the State Library of NSW Foundation.

Exhibition highlights

/typus-cosmographicus-universalis
/maris-pacifici
/exquisita-magno-aliquot-mensium-periculo
/nova-et-accuratissima-totius-terrarium-orbis-tabula
/carte-tres-curieuse-de-la-mer-du-sud
/chart-representing-isles-south-sea
/nuove-scoperte-fatte-nel-1765-67-e-69-nel-mare-del-sud-1
/chart-pacific-ocean
/lettera-di-andrea-corsali-allo-illustrissimo-signore-duco-iuliano-de-medici
/globo-del-cielo-di-tre-piedi-e-mezzo-di-diametro-celestial-globe
/new-terrestrial-globe

Meet the curators

Maggie Patton

Maggie Patton

Maggie Patton is the Manager, Research & Discovery at the State Library of New South Wales. She is responsible for leading the curatorial team in the delivery of projects that develop, interpret, and promote discovery and engagement with the significant and unique State Library collections. Maggie has specialist expertise in rare books and maps.
Alice Tonkinson

Alice Tonkinson

Alice Tonkinson is assistant curator of the exhibition Maps of the Pacific. With a background in history and museum and heritage studies, Alice has worked with the Library’s extensive map collection, acquiring material, researching and writing about it.