Events & Talks

Throughout the year the State Library organises a range of exciting events, most of them free. For events at a glance, check out the events calendar.

From stimulating lectures and talks inspired by our exhibitions and collections to films and concerts - there is something to interest everyone. All venues at the library are wheelchair accessible.


Wednesday 19 August 2015, 6:00pm

The James Sykes Battye Memorial Fellowship honours the legacy of librarian and historian James Sykes Battye, Chief Librarian of the State Library of Western Australia from 1894-1954. Established through the Leah Jane Cohen Bequest, the Fellowship aims to enhance understanding of Western Australia through research based on the State Library’s heritage collections, particularly the J.S. Battye Library.

The current (2015) recipient, Professor Ian Reid, is the fourth scholar to be awarded the J.S. Battye Memorial Fellowship since its inception in 2007. Previous Fellows have investigated topics as diverse as the history of the Swan River (Sue Graham Taylor), Western Australia’s 19th Century colonists (Jane Davis) and Noongar songs of the South-West (Clint Bracknell).

Join Ian Reid on Wednesday 19 August, as he talks about the processes and problems of writing serious historical fiction, with particular reference to the scope of the State Library’s J.S. Battye Library holdings.

History’s Grist and Fiction’s Mill: researching and amplifying stories of Western Australia

Venue: State Library Theatre
Time: 6:00pm

Following his presentation, Ian will chair a discussion by Winthrop Professor Jenny Gregory AM, Dr Amanda Curtin and Dr David Whish-Wilson on writing historical fiction.

Books by Amanda Curtin, Jenny Gregory, Ian Reid and David Whish-Wilson will be available at the event for sale and signing. The event is free, but please register to attend at

For more information about the State Library’s collections or the James Sykes Battye fellowship please call 9427 3111.

SCIENCE WEEK FESTIVAL 15 - 16 August 2015 

Saturday 15 August

Science Storytime
Listen to science stories, sing songs and take away some ideas of activities to do at home.
Venue: Big Stage in the Cultural Centre
Time: 10.15am – 10.45am repeated at 11.30am – 12 noon
Suitable for 3 – 7 year olds
Family friendly event

Tech Cafe
Do you want to join the eBook revolution? Would you like to listen to audio books on your phone? How about flicking through eMagazines on your tablet? Visit the Tech Café at the State Library of Western Australia and learn how to access all of these and more. Best of all, it’s completely free. Just bring your mobile device and your library card.
Venue: Discovery Lounge at the State Library
Time: 1.00pm – 3.00pm
Suitable for all ages

Fireballs in the Sky
Meteorites are the oldest rocks in existence, and they generate a fireball as they come through the atmosphere.The Desert Fireball Network  (DFN) is a network of digital cameras in the outback desert of Australia that capture photographs of the night sky. These can track the rock forward to where it lands, and back to where it came from in the solar system.
Come along to this session to discover what we’ve found out and how you can join in!

Venue: State Library Theatre
Time: 2.30pm – 3.30pm
Suitable for 7 – 99 years

Sunday 16 August

Green Screen
Become your own space hero on the green screen.
Venue: The Place, Mezzanine Level
Time: 11.00am – 1.30pm
Suitable for 3 – 12 year olds
Family friendly event.

Weird and Wonderful WA

On WA Day, visitors were invited to explore the weird and wonderful past through photographs from the State Library of Western Australia's pictorial collection and to create a caption of their own. 

To find out more about each of the photographs have a look at our Weird and Wonderful slideshow. Click on the caption and it will take you through to the State Library catalogue for more detailed information.

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Page last updated: Thursday 23 July 2015

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