big dig


Sydney Harbour YHA and The Big Dig Archaeological Site

Video Project 



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Richard Cass:  Course Coordinator, Bachelor of 3D Art and Animation, Digital Media Concept Art, Sydney TAFE Design Centre Enmore

Alison Frappell:  Education & Interpretation Officer, Sydney Harbour YHA & The Big Dig, YHA Ltd

Julian Ledger:  CEO, YHA Ltd

Nick Nleszynski:

Therese O’Leary:  Editor and Student, 3D Art and Animation, Sydney TAFE Design Centre Enmore

Shane Teehan:

Hüseyin Türem:  Head Teacher, Sydney Institute Film Academy – SIFA, TAFE NSW


Digital Humanities notes – 12 September


The Rocks Discovery Museum


The Rocks Discovery Museum, housed in a restored 1850s sandstone warehouse, tells the story of The Rocks from pre-European days to the present.

Four permanent exhibitions have been developed in close consultation with the Metropolitan Aboriginal Land Council which share the history and stories of the area and the impact of European settlement. The exhibitions cover the periods:

  • Warrane (pre-1788)
  • Colony (1788–1820)
  • Port (1820–1900)
  • Transformations (1900–present)

You can learn about the area’s traditional custodians, the establishment of the English colony and the time when sailors, whalers and traders made The Rocks their home; through to the 1970s union-led protests which preserved this unique part of Sydney for future generations to explore and enjoy.

Home to a unique collection of images and archaeological artefacts found in The Rocks, the exhibits are highly interactive; using touch screens, audio and visual elements to bring the history of the area alive.

Susannah Place Museum 

Built in 1844, Susannah Place Museum is a terrace of four houses that incorporates a recreated 1915 corner store. Rare in the city of Sydney, it has a continuous history of domestic occupancy by working class families.

imagesSusannah Place Museum provides a rare opportunity to explore domestic working class life from 1844 to 1990. It is evidence of the richness of community life that existed in The Rocks. The modest interiors and rear yards illustrate the restrictions of nineteenth century inner city life.

The many layers of the paint finishes, wallpapers and floor coverings that have survived provide a valuable insight into the tastes of the working class. The original brick privies and open laundries are some of the earliest surviving washing and sanitary amenities remaining in the city.

Newspapers and Books

Digital Newspapers

Inside The Rocks: The Archaeology of a Neighbourhood. Sydney

Karskens, Grace.

Inside The Rocks: The Archaeology of a Neighbourhood. Sydney: Hale & Iremonger, 1999.

The Rocks: Life in Early Sydney. Carlton, Victoria: Melbourne University Press, 1997.


Public Sydney: Drawing the City

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Philip Thalis and Peter John Cantrill

Thalis, Philip, Historic Houses Trust of New South Wales, and University of New South Wales. Public Sydney: Drawing the City. Sydney: Co-Published by the Historic Houses Trust of New South Wales and Faculty of the Built Environment, University of New South Wales, 2013.

“This book describes the public buildings and spaces of the city of Sydney and chronicles their formation. As well as essays on the design and construction of the city, its major buildings, places and parklands, you will find an overview of almost 100 public sites within the historic limits of the city centre, supported by images and drawings, plans, elevations and sections. There are also maps to help … locate these places in the city. The second essay in this book traces Sydney’s formation and is accompanied by historical maps showing the city’s evolution from 1788. Following this … are concise studies of more than 50 selected projects …”–page 10. Posted on the National Library of Australia web site

Sydney Living Museums

Design Centre Library – 720.99441

ArchitectureAU link

Web Links

Australian Dictionary of Biography

Australian Geographic

The Big Dig – YHA

Convict Records

Dictionary of Sydney

The Dirt on the Rocks

If These Walls Could Talk….

Heritage and Conservation Register of NSW – Sydney Harbour Foreshore Authority

Historical Atlas of Sydney

Kit Devine is building an immersive and interactive virtual model of the Sydney Rocks that covers the period from 1788 to 2010.

National Register of Historic Places

NSW Environment and Heritage

The Rocks by Grace Karskens 2008

Sydney Learning Adventures –  Battle for The Rocks:  Identity, heritage and conservation

The Virtual Sydney Rocks Guidebook


Anchorage, Alaska, they have a GPS tour on this web page. Click on it and it takes you to a map where you can select areas and look at the history – link.


historypin – A global community collaborating around history.

Sight and Sounds:

– last drinks

– unguarded moments

Esem Projects

Eyes on the Street:  City Evolutions Newcastle 2013

The Last Drinks Project:  2012 

City of Sydney, Statement of Environmental Effects for MLC Centre Activation Project: Castlereagh Street, King Street and Lees Court for Digital Projection and Temporary physical Art Works. 


This video was put together by Sydney Learning Adventures to explain and promote The Big Dig programs to teachers

This video is about Amsterdam

An interesting project by students in London

URBAN  TREE PROJECT for Vivid Sydney 2014

A section from DCE3D: Animation projected for launch of Skills Week 2013

Rocking the Foundations – A History of the Green Bans Movement

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