Michael Reason

Michael Reason

Curator, Leisure and Social Spaces

About me

Contact me
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Born and raised in Hobart, Tasmania, I moved to Melbourne after studying History at the University of Tasmania. After a stint working in the financial sector, I happily gained a customer service position at the new Scienceworks Museum at Spotswood. Whilst there, I undertook a Graduate Diploma of Museum Studies at Deakin University, which helped me move in Collection Management work in Science and Technology and Social History Collections. Highlights included working with the 80,000 large format negatives of the Laurie Richards collection, which documented commercial life in Melbourne from the 1950s to the 1970s.

In the 2000s, I was able to move across to the Curatorial team; first as a generalist curator and then establishing my own area, which I was able to christen `Leisure and Social Spaces’. My areas of particular interest include post 1900 fashion, film and television production and distribution, festivals and events (such as Moomba, Olympic Games and Melbourne Cup), Australian toys and games and local jewellery design. I also am curatorially responsible for the museum’s iconic Phar Lap and related exhibition; acted as his mouth piece when required.

Projects and events

Selected exhibitions

Fashion Redux, Melbourne Museum, 2019 – Curator

You Can’t Do That, Melbourne Museum, 2018 - Curator

Phar Lap: A True Legend, Melbourne Museum, 2008 - Curator

The Melbourne Story, Melbourne Museum, 2008 – Contributing Curator

Selected presentation highlights

Melbourne Fashion Festival virtual tour, Clothing and Textiles Stores, 2021

Adapting the Curve: Panicking, Pivoting and Adapting virtual lecture, Melbourne Museum, 2020

History Store virtual tour, Melbourne Museum, 2020

Why Models Work: The History Edition lecture, Melbourne Museum, 2020

Prue Acton: In Conversation, Design Archives, RMIT, 2018

History of Horse Racing in Australia: In Conversation, NGV, 2015


Phar Lap: A True Legend, Museum Victoria. Originally published 2005; revised edition 2009 – Author

Melbourne. A City of Stories, exhibition catalogue, Museum Victoria, 2008 – Contributing Author

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