Director appointed for 2020 opening of Science Gallery Melbourne

Science Gallery International (SGI) and the University of Melbourne today announce that Rose Hiscock will become the inaugural Director of Science Gallery Melbourne, an innovative venue for science and art collaboration planned for the heart of Melbourne’s new innovation precinct.

Science Gallery is an award-winning international initiative pioneered by Trinity College, Dublin that delivers a dynamic new model for engaging 15–25 year olds with science.

Planned to open in 2020, Science Gallery Melbourne is a flagship engagement project of the University of Melbourne and once established, will be part of the Global Science Gallery Network - a network of eight Science Gallery locations developed in partnership with leading universities in urban centres.

Melbourne is hoped to follow London, which is due to open Science Gallery London in 2017, with Science Gallery Bangalore also planned to open in 2018.

Rose Hiscock commenced as the inaugural Director of Science Gallery Melbourne in February 2016, after completing her current role as Director of the Museum of Applied Arts and Sciences, which includes the Powerhouse Museum in Sydney. Ms Hiscock previously held the role of Executive Director Arts Development at the Australia Council.

Each Science Gallery will generate exhibitions and programs derived from the local creative and scientific community, which can be shared through the global network and beyond, increasing public understanding and access to high quality science-art public engagement.

To be located at the intersection of Swanston and Grattan Streets, and offering the community free dynamic exhibitions and absorbing programming, it is envisaged that Science Gallery Melbourne will act as the ‘front door’ to the University of Melbourne’s new innovation precinct, Carlton Connect.

Professor Karen Day, Dean of Science at the University of Melbourne underlined the benefits that a Science Gallery Melbourne could bring both to Melbourne and Australia. “Appointing the highly talented Rose Hiscock is the next step in establishing an innovative venue which will add to the cultural and creative richness of Melbourne, and will make a decisive contribution to the vibrant innovation ecosystem rapidly expanding at the University of Melbourne.”

“75 per cent of the fastest growing occupations require STEM subjects, where Australia has worrying gaps in these skills from primary to tertiary education levels. A Science Gallery Melbourne would be a powerful addition towards building Australia’s engagement and literacy in STEM subjects and in providing a creative bridge between art and science (STEAM). We are seeking the partnerships to make this stunning vision a reality,” highlighted Professor Day.

Ms Hiscock said she is honoured to have been chosen to set up Science Gallery Melbourne.

“As a passionate advocate for arts and science, I believe Science Gallery Melbourne will make a profound impact on the ideas and cultural life of the city,” said Ms Hiscock.

“This is the perfect partnership between a prestigious international network, Australia’s number one University and excellence in arts and science.

“Arts and science play a crucial role in shaping our future. I’m looking forward to working with great minds - from Australia and around the world - to bring this exciting new initiative to Melbourne.”

University of Melbourne Vice-Chancellor, Professor Glyn Davis underscored the significance of Science Gallery Melbourne as part of the University’s mission.

“Establishing a Science Gallery in Melbourne is a key pillar within our engagement strategy,” said Professor Davis.

“Engagement is the expression of who we are and what we value as a public-spirited University. 

“We are committed to the principle that science is the future, and a Science Gallery Melbourne will provide a whole generation of young people with science that is exciting, accessible but also intellectually challenging."

Michael John Gorman, CEO of Science Gallery International, highlighted why Melbourne was a natural choice for the next Science Gallery within the Global Science Gallery Network.

"For Science Gallery International, Melbourne was the obvious choice for the location of the first and only planned Australian Science Gallery due to its combination of a world-class university partner in the University of Melbourne, and its vibrant scientific and artistic communities - a city designed for creative collisions between science and art. I am thrilled that Rose Hiscock, an outstanding cultural leader, will be the Founding Director of Science Gallery Melbourne, and I believe that Science Gallery Melbourne, joining its sister galleries in Dublin, London and Bangalore, will be an unstoppable force of inspiration for the next generation of innovators."