Fiona Kinsey

Fiona Kinsey

Senior Curator, Images & Image Making

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I am a senior curator with almost 20 years of experience at Museums Victoria. I currently collect, research and interpret material culture relating to the history of the Australian photographic industry, and the practice of commercial and amateur photography.

I am passionate about engaging with our community, especially those people who once made or used the material in the collections that I now curate.

Along with a team of Museum staff and a group of former workers from Kodak Australasia, I am currently working on a long-term project to document and interpret the Kodak Heritage Collection, which I acquired in 2005. This extensive and significant collection, comprising many thousands of photographs, objects, documents and moving footage films relating to the company’s operation in Australia, is currently being registered, image-captured and published online, and oral history interviews are being undertaken with former staff.

I am also embarking on an exciting new project, 'The Camera at Work: Photographs of Melbourne Manufacturing Workers 1870s-1970s'.

Previously, with a small team of curators, collection managers, public programs staff and photographers, I was lead curator on a community collecting project in 2006. The result was the Melbourne’s Biggest Family Album Collection of over 1000 images, dating from the 1880s to the 1980s. 

During my time at Museums Victoria I have also worked on a wide variety of other collections, ranging from leisure and information technology to domestic life, including the Hecla Collection, which I helped acquire. I have also contributed to exhibitions on a diverse range of topics including The Melbourne Story, horology (clocks and watches), CSIRAC (Australia’s first computer), tools of trade, Kodak Australasia, and Museum Victoria’s Treasures. 

I have been a collector of ephemera and lover of photography ever since I was a child, and I am fascinated by a wide range of historical topics. I could not imagine a more appropriate place to work than Museums Victoria.

Qualifications

Bachelor of Arts with Honours in History, La Trobe University; 

Postgraduate Diploma, Museum Studies, Deakin University;

Masters with First Class Honours, Australian Studies, University of Melbourne - ‘Radical Sport Cyclists, Progressive Excursionists and Conservative ‘Butterflies’: Diversity of Form and Femininity in Australian Women’s Cycling in the 1890s’

Key publications

(Peer Reviewed)

Kinsey, Fiona and Dale-Hallett, Liza, ‘The Material Culture and Memories of Manufacturing Melbourne’, pp.190-203 in The Caring Museum: New Models of Engagement with Ageing, Robertson, Hamish (ed), MuseumsEtc, 2015

Kinsey, Fiona, ‘Women’s cycling: 19th century’, pp 269-270 in: D. Nadel and G. Ryan (Eds), Sport in Victoria: A History, Australian Society for Sports History and Ryan Publishing, Melbourne, 2015

Kinsey, Fiona, ‘Stamina, Speed and Adventure: Australian Women and Competitive Cycling in the 1890s’, pp. 1375-1387 (13), The International Journal of the History of Sport, Special Issue: Australasia and Pacific, Volume 28, Number 10, July 2011

Kinsey, Fiona, ‘Reading Photographic Portraits of Australian Women Cyclists in the 1890s: From Costume and Cycle Choices to Constructions of Feminine Identity’, pp.1121-1137, International Journal of the History of Sport, Special Issue: Sport and The Visual, Taylor & Francis, Vol 28, Numbers 8-9, May-June 2011.

Kinsey, Fiona, ‘Australian Women Cyclists in the 1890s’, pp.77-101, Scorchers, Ramblers and Rovers: Australasian Cycling Histories, ed. Clare S Simpson, ASSH Studies 21, Australian Society for Sports History, 2006.

Links

Projects and events

Projects

Kodak Heritage Project - registration, research, digitisation & interpretation with MV grant funded project team and former Kodak staff volunteer team, 2013-2018

Grants

Kodak Heritage Collection project has received 3 rounds of philanthropic funding to support the registration, conservation and interpretation of the collection, 2013 -2018

La Trobe University RFA Scheme Seed Grant, awarded to Dr Emma Robertson (LaTrobe) and Fiona Kinsey (MV) for ‘The Camera at Work: Photographs of Melbourne Manufacturing Workers 1870s-1970s’, 2017

Exhibitions

Kodak Australasia Anniversary Event, curator, Melbourne Museum, 2015

The Melbourne Story contributing curator, Melbourne Museum, 2008

Treasures: Museum Victoria celebrates 150 years, contributing curator of ‘Washing Machines’, ‘Metters Moffat Stove’, and ‘Trade Literature’, Melbourne Museum, 2004

CSIRAC: Australia’s First Computer, co-curator, Melbourne Museum, 2004

Tools of Trade, contributing curator, Scienceworks, 2003

Clockwise, curator, Scienceworks, 2002  

A-Z ‘Letter G’, curator, Scienceworks, 2002

@digital.au, co-curator, Melbourne Museum, 2001

International Conferences

Plenary Panel Speaker, ‘Collecting and Archiving Family Photographs’, Reframing Family Photography Conference, University of Toronto, Canada, 21 Sep - 23 Sep 2017

‘Photographic Portraits of Australian Women Cyclists in the 1890s: Constructions of Feminine Identity’, Visual Turn in Sport History Conference, Bristol University, UK, 2009

Australian Conferences & Lectures

'Echoes of Industry: Tracing the Evolution of Kodak Australasia through its Oral and Visual Record’, Fiona Kinsey and Hannah Perkins, Australian Historical Association Conference, Ballarat, 5 July 2016

'Manufacturing 'Moments' – The Kodak Story in Melbourne, 1884 – 2004,’ History & The Meaning of Things Seminar Series, Melbourne Museum, 12 September & 26 October 2012

'An Early Morning’s Run… With a Party of Skirt Riders’, 14th Biennial Australian Historical Association Conference, Melbourne, 7-10 July 2008

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'Introducing The 1890s Australian Cycliste', Australian Cycling History Conference, “Spinning Stories: Cycling and Cyclists in Australasia”, Geelong, 2007

'City Boulevards, Suburban Streets & Off the Beaten Track – Australian Women Cyclists in the 1890s and the Politics of Place’, Sporting Traditions XV Conference, “Sporting Places, Sporting Cultures”, Session: Cycling, 2005

‘In focus: Women, Cycling and Photography in Late 19th Century Australia, Australian Historical Association Conference, Session: Australian Society for Sports History ‘Stream’, Session: ‘Gender, Sport and Media’, Newcastle, 2004

‘From ‘butterfly cyclistes’ on Beaconsfield Parade to fearless endurance riders: Women cyclists in 1890s Australia’, Australian Society for Sports History Seminar, 2004

‘In Focus: Women, Cycling and Photography at the Turn of the 20th Century’, Art Association of Australia and New Zealand Annual Conference, Canberra, 5-6 December 2003

‘In Focus: Women, Cycling and Photography in Late Nineteenth Century Australia’, History and the Meaning of Things: Seminar Series on History & Material Culture, Museum Victoria, Melbourne, 8 October 2003

‘Museum as masculinist construct -  Domestic Technology as the Bric-a-Brac of the Museum Victoria Science and Technology collections’, Museums Australia ‘Power and Empowerment’ Conference, Sydney, 1996

Committees

Chair, Museums Victoria Humanities Department Oral History Committee, 2014

Member, Australasian Cycling History Conference Organising Committee, 2007 and 2009

National Convenor, Museums Australia Women in Museums Special Interest Group, 2002 - 2004

Member, Museums Australia Professional Development & Training Committee, 2002 - 2006

Memberships

Australian Historical Association

Museums Australia (Victoria)

Media

'The Kodak Heritage Collection Appeal', Insite Magazine, Museums Australia (Victoria), pp 6-7, July-August 2014.

'MyVoice', (Kodak oral history project), Melbourne Times Weekly, p.2, 5 September 2012

"The Kodak Heritage Collection", Your Museums, November 2016  

Community Engagement Events

Kodak Heritage Collection 10th Anniversary Event, Melbourne Museum, November 2015

Teaching and students

I'm available for student supervision.

Student and Volunteer Supervisions

Kodak Heritage Collection Project - library and archives students from RMIT; history students from Monash University and University of Melbourne; museum studies students from Deakin University; and Birmingham University Intern, 2010 – 2017

Hecla Collection, 2010

Olive Oliver Collection, 2010

Australian laminate and paint product manufacturers, 2008

Melbourne domestic technology manufacturers, 2005-06

Melbourne photography studios, 2005-2006, 2008

Publications

Peer Reviewed

Kinsey, Fiona and Dale-Hallett, Liza, ‘The Material Culture and Memories of Manufacturing Melbourne’, pp.190-203 in The Caring Museum: New Models of Engagement with Ageing, Robertson, Hamish (ed), MuseumsEtc, 2015

Kinsey, Fiona, ‘Stamina, Speed and Adventure: Australian Women and Competitive Cycling in the 1890s’, The International Journal of the History of Sport, Volume 28, Number 10, July 2011, Special Issue: Australasia and Pacific, pp. 1375-1387(13)

Kinsey, Fiona, ‘Reading Photographic Portraits of Australian Women Cyclists in the 1890s: From Costume and Cycle Choices to Constructions of Feminine Identity’, International Journal of the History of Sport, (special edition: The Visual in Sport), Taylor & Francis, 2011.

Kinsey, Fiona, ‘Australian Women Cyclists in the 1890s’, pp.77-101, Scorchers, Ramblers and Rovers: Australasian Cycling Histories, ed. Clare S Simpson, ASSH Studies 21, Australian Society for Sports History, 2006.

Non-Peer Reviewed

Kinsey, Fiona, ‘Women’s cycling: 19th century’, pp 269-270 in: D. Nadel and G. Ryan (Eds), Sport in Victoria: A History, Australian Society for Sports History and Ryan Publishing, Melbourne, 2015

Kinsey, Fiona, contributing-author, Melbourne: A City of Stories, Museum Victoria, 2008

Kinsey, Fiona and Demant, David, ‘CSIRAC – the First Computer in Australia’, IEEE Annals of the History of Computing, Jan – March 2002, pp. 93-94.

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