Melbourne Museum – until 25 August 2019

By Andrea Royston

Want to be taken back through the five years in the 1960’s that arguably changed the world forever? For just $29 you can do that at the Melbourne Museum this winter. Revolutions: Records and Rebels is a thrilling exhibition that explores the eruptive years of 1966 – 1970.

Established by the Victoria and Albert Museum in London, this exhibition took two years to form. It looks closely at the influential changes that occurred during this time by capturing the voices of disruptors in music, fashion, technology and politics. The exhibition explores the impact this period had on the way we live today and how we think about tomorrow.

With over 500 objects on display highlights include John Lennon’s signature glasses, hand written lyrics for the Beatles hit ‘Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds’, Iconic Mini dresses worn by Twiggy and protest materials that defined the anti-Vietnam War movement. It is an exhibition not to be missed.

The handwritten lyrics to Beatles song ‘Revolution’ reveal a rare insight into Lennon’s songwriting process, with words that rhyme with ‘revolution’ scribbled down on the left side of the page (‘constitution’, ‘institution’, ‘dissolution’…). The Beatles and John Lennon held a strong presence in this exhibition with multiple garments worn by Lennon himself. Featuring Sgt Peppers outfits, suits and original album cover sketches.

On show were books of influence on topics including LSD, feminism, war and music. Rare vinyl covers were on display with the likes of The Rolling Stones “Their Satanic Majesties Request”.

The exhibition takes you through the strong influences of this time. Each room there is a blurb on the wall that introduces you to the area you are entering. As you follow these blurbs you will reach your own conclusion at the end.

It isn’t only the physical pieces that form this remarkable exhibition. Seinhesiter developed a sound experience throughout the exhibition using film and video footage of voices of the era. Upon entry, you receive a headset before exploring. As you explore the exhibition you are guided through with an exceptional playlist including Jefferson Airplane, Jimi Hendrix and Creedence Clearwater Revival (just to name a few)!

You will hear voices call out from the frontlines of Vietnam and the right for constitutional recognition of Australia’s First Peoples in the 1967 Referendum. You will witness the solidarity and horror on the streets of Paris and the grounds of Kent University. View real anti-war protest posters and hand-written journal entries from young students about the day man first walked on the moon in 1969.

The Woodstock room was the only place to take your headsets off. This is where you could view a video and audio compilation of the festival that was conceived as ‘Three Days of Peace and Music’ in 1969. The screens fitted the entire walls and the room was full of bean bags for people to lay down and absorb the short film. It was clearly a stand out for most visitors.

This exhibition has and will continue to draw a diverse crowd of younger and older inspired individuals.

Families should note that this exhibition contains mature content, including violence, drug references, nudity and adult themes, viewer discretion is advised by parents or guardians of children under the age of 18.

Until 25 August 2019 at Melbourne Museum. For tickets and sessions go to

What people are saying so far…

I’m awestruck…” – Speaker TV
If you’ve ever wanted to take a deep dive into some of the most iconic moments of the late 1960s, here’s your chance.” – Concrete Playground
Immersive…” – TimeOut
Don’t miss it.” – Urban List
Incredible…” – We Know Melbourne