Imagine: a living archive of people and place “somewhere beyond custody”

Sue McKemmish, Tom Chandler, Shannon Faulkhead

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

17 Citations (Scopus)


In this paper, we challenge the traditional collecting archive model, which disembeds records from their living contexts and preserves them for future access in custodial, institutional settings, characterizing it as a continuing colonization of knowledge structures for Indigenous Australians. Referencing the warrant provided by the findings of the Australian Research Council-funded Trust and Technology research project, we imagine new forms of Archive that reconnect with existing and ancient Indigenous forms back through time, “somewhere beyond custody.” We discuss the Monash Country Lines Archive Program in partnership with Indigenous Australian communities as an exemplar of a decolonized, participatory Archive. We imagine how future research partnerships might conceptualize and model a creative technology-enabled, participatory Archive—a Living Archive of People and Place to contribute to healing and wellbeing. It would aim to embed or re-embed dispersed archival records in Country and reconnect them with the tangible and intangible records of place and people that continue to exist there. Finally, we discuss reconciling research methodologies and methods that would support the realization of our imaginings.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)281-301
Number of pages21
JournalArchival Science
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 17 Aug 2019


  • 3D animation
  • Augmented reality
  • Indigenous archiving
  • Indigenous wellbeing
  • Participatory archiving
  • Reconciling research

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