ICOM Australia Award (IAA)

The ICOM Australia Award recognises and celebrates the outstanding work undertaken by ICOM Australia member institutions and individuals that has strengthened international relations and contributed to the cultural richness of our region.

Australian museums enrich the cultural, social and intellectual lives of all Australians and in so doing contribute to the development of well-informed, tolerant and cohesive communities. The exchange of ideas and expertise between our near neighbours is an important part of expanding these opportunities.

Australian museums have both the opportunity and the responsibility to share their expertise, information and resources, especially with our near neighbours in the Asia-Pacific Region.

Award winners are presented with a glass globe sculpture and certificate. The sculptures were commissioned by ICOM Australia from Sydney based master glassmaker Benjamin Edols, and were created at the Canberra Glassworks.

The award prior to 2015 was known as the ICOM Australia Award for International Relations.

Two categories of award are offered for:

  • a discrete project or an ongoing initiative during the previous year that strengthens museum relations internationally, promotes information sharing across borders and distributes resources beyond Australia
  • an outstanding individual achievement, recognising sustained international work over a long period.


2015 award

The awards were presented by Dr Robin Hirst (Chair, ICOM Australia) at the 2015 Museums Australia Conference dinner at Sydney on 23 May 2015.

Briefing brochure (207kB)

Individual award

Dr Don McMichael

Dr Don McMichael is an outstanding example of individual achievement in international relations, undertaking sustained international work over a long period. He has consistently shown an international awareness and commitment in the many significant roles he has held.

Don McMichael testimonial (138kB)

Institutional award

National Portrait Gallery

The award for a discrete project recognises an exemplary collaboration between Australia’s National Portrait Gallery and the National Gallery of Indonesia for the 2014 exhibition Masters of modern Indonesian portraiture  and associated capacity building workshops.

National Portrait Gallery testimonial (148kB)


Previous awards



There was no award in 2008.

Copyright Roger Garland