For this episode of Object Matters host Dr Craig Barker is joined by Dr Natali Pearson of the University of Sydney's Sydney Southeast Asia Centre (SSEAC). Natali is a critical heritage scholar, so together they discuss her work on the maritime heritage of Southeast Asia, including her own work and her recent publication on the Belitung shipwreck in Indonesian waters, and the importance of Australians knowing our nearest neighbours better. Moving from Southeastern Asia to the Mediterranean, together they discuss the second century BC transport amphora (Greco-Italic style) covered with shell encrustations, and muse upon the sea's influence on human cultural history, trade and transportation of commodities and the importance of the encrustation as part of the object's history.

Guest: Dr Natali Pearson is a critical heritage studies scholar at the Sydney Southeast Asia Centre, specialising in maritime heritage in Southeast Asia, and an Honorary Associate in the Discipline of Archaeology. She hosts the SSEAC Stories podcast. Her research interests and experience include the ethics, provenance and laundering of underwater cultural heritage; heritage diplomacy; and the management of shared wrecks. Her bookBelitung: The Afterlives of a Shipwreck was published in 2023 by University of Hawaii Press. She is the President of the Indonesia Council and an Expert Member, International Council on Monuments and Sites-International Committee on Archaeological Heritage Management. Follow Natali on X: @sea_greeny

Host: Dr Craig Barker, Head of Public Engagement, Chau Chak Wing Museum and Director, Paphos Theatre Archaeological Excavations. Follow @DrCraig_B on X and Instagram.

Objects details:

'Greco-Italic' Transport Amphora with shell encrustations, Gulf of Naples near Baiae, Italy, c. 200-130 BC.

Donated by Sir Charles Nicholson 1860 [NMR.1031.1-7]

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