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Your views: on Marshall's Aboriginal art gallery, and SA's economy

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Today, readers comment on how best to display the state’s indigenous art, and debate its overall economic health.

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Commenting on the story: Marshall’s Aboriginal art gallery drops “national” from name

I note your recent report on the dropping of the word “national” from Premier Marshall’s vision for an Aboriginal Art Gallery in Adelaide.

Frankly, more substantial changes need to be considered to put the proposal on a strong cultural and museological footing.

The first problem is the rather displaced proposed location in the old RAH site. among the hi-tech commercial organisations that the government now plans for that site.

Instead, the existing building of the South Australian Museum (SAM) on North Terrace should be given over entirely to a Museum of Aboriginal and Oceanic Art and Culture, making it physically and symbolically an equal partner to the Art Gallery of South Australia located immediately next door.

Indeed it makes sense to plan the future integration of these collections into one larger cultural institution, like the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York.

A Museum of Aboriginal and Oceanic Art and Culture would incorporate not only SAM’s substantial holdings related to Aboriginal Australia but also its major collection of Pacific Islander arts and material culture.

Such an expansion and integration is eminently logical, given that Australia is geographically, historically and culturally a part of Oceania.

As we can see in museums like Quai Branly in Paris, the international interest in the arts of the whole Oceanic region is immense.

Adelaide already has an important cultural asset that deserves more exposure and recognition.

SAM’s existing collections of natural sciences would be more sensibly accommodated in their own building on the eastern side of the old RAH site.

There they can address and provide a fitting companion relationship with the Botanical Gardens, which is itself an open-air museum of botanical discovery, just as the nearby zoo is also a natural science living museum. – Dr Bruce Adams

Commenting on the opinion piece: No, SA’s core economic problems haven’t been fixed

While I don’t disagree with Malcolm King that the South Australian economy has fundamental issues, his statement; “The city looked like a ghost town (in 2008). I reckon it’s worse now” is odd.

I’m not sure which metric Mr. King uses to measure a “ghost town” but I think it’s almost undeniable the Adelaide CBD has vastly improved in the past five years or so.

The ongoing development of new apartments, hotels and offices has visually transformed the CBD from feeling severely dated, into a relatively modern mid-size city.

The explosion of new bars and restaurants, alongside Renew Adelaide’s ongoing work in encouraging new and interesting small businesses to start in previously empty shopfronts, has helped shift the city into a far more cosmopolitan place.

Perhaps Mr. King just needs to venture into the city more. Louis Rankin

Well done Malcolm King. An excellent article.

SA has been badly served by state governments and oppositions for decades.

What SA needs is a new political party which accepts the need to restore and improve our environment, accepts the need to look after the disadvantaged and one which will invest in our education system.

After that it should be quite rigid in terms of a cost-benefit analysis approach to government. Geoff Moore

As much as we delude ourselves, SA simply isn’t a tourist hotspot; we have to work at attracting more tourists.

Our expected lifestyles are too expensive. The public service sector must take into account their job security, unlike the private sector, and not constantly expect higher wages and better condition. 

Automation is a big job killer. A large whitegoods manufacturer, I have been told, is reducing their workforce from 400 employees to 15 employees, by embracing automation. Jobs that cannot be replaced quickly.

We have to accept a lower standard in South Australia.

And not rely on handouts from the federal government. Mike Lesiw 

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