Katrina Power at the Museum of Australian Democracy. Photo by Jamie Kidston.

Katrina Power at the Museum of Australian Democracy. Photo by Jamie Kidston.

Watching over works of art

Alumni essay: Katrina Power

If you enjoy your next visit to the Museum of Australian Democracy, the person to thank is Katrina Power, BA (Art History and Curatorship) (Hons) ’97.

This morning I rose at 5am to head to work in the dark to meet riggers installing a truss support system for the audience engagement activity in Kings Hall of Old Parliament House for the 2019 Enlighten Festival in Canberra.

It’s this type of practical activity combined with the intellectually engaging work of discussing content development and exhibition design that kept me interested in cultural sector employment through the years of births, deaths and marriages since my graduation from ANU.

I received a Bachelor of Art History and Curatorship Degree with Honours in 1996, which included a major in Italian, and minors in Archaeology and Anthropology. While applying for many jobs within the cultural sector, I continued working in hospitality until I finally landed a position as a public program officer at Old Parliament House in 1998 where I was, in part, to take people on political history tours of the building.

The National Portrait Gallery was in its infancy at that time, also housed in Old Parliament House and my next role was as gallery assistant during which time I was a part of the team that delivered the inaugural exhibition of the gallery called The Possibilities of Portraiture. It was a really exciting time to be part of a small team delivering something new in rooms reopened and refurbished after parliament moved up the hill in 1988.