Drought, Mud, Filth, and Flood: Water Crises in Australian Cities, 1880s–2010s

Andrea Gaynor, Margaret Cook, Lionel Frost, Jenny Gregory, Ruth Morgan, Martin Shanahan, Peter Spearritt, Susan Avey, Nathan Etherington, Elizabeth Gralton, Daniel Jan Martin

Research output: Contribution to specialist publicationFeatured articlepeer-review


In this exhibition, we invite visitors to consider the historical relationship of “water crises” of various kinds to the development of urban water systems, through the experience of the driest inhabited continent on earth, Australia. We have chosen a range of different departures from water-related business as usual—from shortage to flood, pollution to drainage—in the five mainland Australian state capitals from the late nineteenth century to the present. The part of this exhibition devoted to each city focuses thematically on just one or two kinds of crisis, while the timeline covers a wider range of events in each place.


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