Museum of Brisbane

Do curators have a favourite?


We asked Madeleine Hogan, Assistant Curator at the Museum this very difficult question. Madeleine has been at Museum of Brisbane for two and half years and during this time been part of nine exhibitions. She has seen thousands of objects, artefacts and artworks. Can she pick a favourite? See how she responded below.

Museum of Brisbane: What is your favourite item in a current Museum of Brisbane exhibition?

Madeleine Hogan: My favourite piece will probably surprise a few people…It’s a mug which is displayed in The River: A History of Brisbane.  It was made by James Campbell & Sons, Albion Pottery in the 1930s.

MoB: Why is this item your favourite?

MH: I think the mug is my favourite because it’s humorous. It has a blue lip and a green frog on the inside…. So you can be happily drinking your tea and then “ARGH! There’s a frog in my tea!” There are so many teapots, cups and vases in the collection, it’s fun to see some pottery taken not-so-seriously. It shows these guys had a sense of humour.

MoB: How did the mug become part of the Museum’s collection?

MH: It came to our collection via a purchase in 1979. It’s part of the City of Brisbane Collection, Museum of Brisbane.

MoB: What do you think the item brings to the The River: A History of Brisbane exhibition?

MH: It adds a frog! Every river needs a frog or two right? Jokes aside, I think it adds a little humour to the exhibition, while also demonstrating the technique of the Campbell & Sons pottery works. They made a lot of plain bricks, so this lightens it up a little and shows their playful side.