New Book and Podcast | 125 Treasures

Posted in books, on site, online learning by Editor on May 19, 2021

Hubert Martinet, Elephant Automaton, ca. 1770
(National Trust / Waddesdon Manor)

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In addition to this book celebrating the 125th anniversary of the National Trust (in 2020), the project includes a podcast, hosted by Alison Steadman, the first episode of which addresses Waddesdon Manor’s Elephant Automaton, made by Hubert Martinet (ca. 1770). Tessa Murdoch writes about the elephant for Apollo Magazine (14 May 2021), noting that “an in-depth study of the automaton, written by Jonathan Betts and Roger Smith, is also forthcoming.”

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Tarnya Cooper, 125 Treasures from the Collections of the National Trust (Swindon: National Trust Books, 2021), 224 pages, ISBN: 978-0707804538, £10.

This engaging, beautifully illustrated book brings together a selection of highlights from the National Trust’s vast collection. Arranged chronologically, starting with Roman sculpture and ending with 20th-century design, it focuses on museum-quality objects as well as important examples of decorative arts, furniture, textiles and objects with fascinating stories. The highlights—from Cardinal Wolsey’s purse to Rodin’s bust of George Bernard Shaw—are illustrated with exquisite photography and accompanied by illuminating captions. Based on the dedicated research of over 60 curators across the organisation, the book also includes a timeline of key moments in the Trust’s history.

Tarnya Cooper is the Curatorial and Collections Director at the National Trust.

Online Symposium | Opening Up! Collection Centre Strategies

Posted in conferences (to attend), online learning by Editor on May 19, 2021

From ArtHist.net:

Opening Up! Collection Centre Strategies
Online, SBMK and Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen, 28 May 2021

As a museum professional, how often have you invited a visitor into your museum’s storage facility? Probably never. As a museum visitor, how often have you thought, “I’d really like to see the works in storage?” Undoubtedly very often. Museum storage facilities have traditionally been invisible and inaccessible to the public, usually housed in anonymous warehouses outside the city or in cellars beneath the museum’s building. But there have been changes in recent years.

An iconic example is the new Depot Boijmans Van Beuningen in Rotterdam, which will open in the autumn of 2021. This storage facility will be fully accessible to the public and occupies a prominent position, right next to the museum. The Netherlands is not alone in developing new ideas about preserving collections and opening them up to the public. The Foundation for the Conservation of Contemporary Art (SBMK) and Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen have organised the online event Opening Up! Collection Centre Strategies about interesting international developments in the field of museum storage.

An international panel of six speakers will share their experiences of combining collection care with public access within their storage facility. How did they conceive and design the building? To what extent is it publicly accessible? How do they guarantee the safety of the collections? And how do they approach their visitors? The symposium will conclude with a round-table discussion with all speakers. As a participant, you will be actively involved in the online event: there will be lots of time for questions and comments from the international audience. The event will have a strong visual component with videos of the buildings’ architecture and internal layouts.

Participation costs €25 (€12.50 for students). You can register via the online form here. For the student registration rate, please also send a copy of your student card to aanmelden@sbmk.nl; otherwise the registration will not apply. The symposium is free for a number of museum employees who pay an annual contribution to the SBMK.

F R I D A Y ,  2 8  M A Y  2 0 2 1

2.45  Virtual Walk-in

3.00  Paulien ‘t Hoen (Coordinator SBMK) and Sandra Kisters (Head of Collections and Research, Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen), Welcome

3.10  Sjarel Ex (Director, Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen, Depot), Depot Boijmans Van Beuningen: A New Typology in Reconsidering Art and Conservation?

3.35  Joachim Huber (Consultant, Prevart GmbH, Konzepte für die Kulturgütererhaltung / Concepts for the Preservation of Cultural Assets, Winterthur, Switzerland), Clarifying Collections: An Approach in Seven Acts

4.00  Tim Reeve (Deputy Director and Chief Operating Officer, Victoria and Albert Museum, London), Designing a New Paradigm for Access to the Nation’s Attic

4.25  Break

4.45  Markus Leuthard (Head of the Collections Center, Swiss National Museum, Affoltern am Albis, Switzerland), The Swiss National Museum’s Collections Centre: Our Approach to Collections Care and Public Access

5.10  Jane Dini (Senior Curator of American Art, Brooklyn Museum, New York), Shimmering Shelves and Tiffany Lighting: Glamming-up Luce Visible Storage

5.35  Round Table Discussion with Speakers and Isabel Friedli (Curator at Schaulager, Basel, Switzerland)

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