I don’t think an organization system would ever annoy me until I got in The Hand Art Center. This week we learned that the Bluemner pieces are not correctly in their boxes. After going through every single box and writing down every single accession number we found that Past Perfect is not fully correct on every piece and that not everything is in the right spot. We discovered this while picking the new pieces for the Fall exhibit that we are trying to prepare for. Tonya and I are trying to figure out the next steps since this was my best project that I would be working on for my internship. Luckily I have almost found all the pieces I need to take picture of now it is just a matter of getting all the correct boxes to match in Past Perfect and for everything to have its certain place in the vault.
This is not what I expected to have happen as I went through every box but I am glad that we have finally figured out the big problem of why we cannot always find an art piece. So once we can find and matte everything for the show the rest of my internship will basically be to solve the organizational issues of the Bluemner collection. I’m hoping we can figure this out before the semester starts so we don’t have too many problems when finding pieces of the Spring show.
Since we have the Fourth of July off this week, it was kind of an easy week. Tonya has been filling out a grant report to send into the county for money for the museum. I had to go through and look at all the numbers for people at events and count how many people we had in the museum for the year and what times we were the busiest. I also had to go through the calendar and account for every event that we have had in the past year and list it. This was a good learning moment cause I was unaware for this process and did not know about it.
We decided to make this an easier transition for when this comes next year by keeping an excel sheet for the year and make sure we add the number of guests for events and write down last minute lectures or visitors that come to speak at the museum or use the seminar room. I hope this makes it easier when we have to fill it out again this time next year. I really think it was important for me to learn this so I am glad that I was here during this time to make a better system for us in the future.
This week is still moving ceramics from Sampson Hall to the Hand Art Center. It was been delayed due to rain almost everyday but has been successful for us to find them new homes in the vault. We have been getting ready for the reception that will be on Thursday for the Louis Freund exhibit and I am looking forward to my first reception in order to meet people. I think it is very important for students especially in my field to connect with faculty and make connections.
I really enjoyed working the reception, around 54 people came to the event and it has a good turn out and their was great food. I think these events are crucial for the Hand Art Center in order for more people to come and look at the exhibits. It was awesome being able to see other people and even some students and alumni come to the event and be able to talk to them and for them to ask us questions. I really enjoyed this and I cant wait for more events like these when I am able to continue to work here in the fall.
This week was little hectic as the previous. We began moving the ceramics collection from Sampson Hall into the Hand Art Center. My job was to of course catalog all the pieces and set their new location and take pictures for them all. So this took most of the days of the week. Tonya was always away at a conference so the only tasks were to really watch the front desk and count visitors and catalog. Due to the rain we have not received many visitors so it has been very slow. I have been looking through past perfect trying to see all the things I have to take pictures for and I hope to completely finish pictures by the end of the internship so the database is completely up to date and we will no longer have problem knowing what piece it is. other than this small cataloging the week has been pretty slow but efficient for me.
As we are still going through all the Bluemner works and having to reorganize files and pieces it has been interesting to be able to go through the process of finding works we have misplaced. Past Perfect has been updated to its best possible information at this point in time but it is also difficult to find pieces when you have to go through EVERY box which contain up to 50 – 100 pieces of work in order to find that one that you are missing. I think that this experience has made me realize hoe important it is to keep up with your documents and make sure they are updated in Past Perfect and in any other records you have for the body of work. Next week Dan Gunderson is allowing us to take some of his ceramics and moving them and adding them into our documents so that will be an interesting move for the team to complete and document in Past Perfect. I never knew that we had such a collection of works in the ceramics department so I am exciting to be able to photograph and add them in our records. I think that so far working here as given me a lot of experience that I was not expecting to receive as fast as I have but I am really glad to be able to work at my own university with a staff that I know and trust. It makes the internship process much more fun and relaxing but also challenges you to be your best in order to teach the newer students around you about the museum and the way Tonya wants things to be ran.
June 4th – June 7th
So far I have masters the proper ways to touch the art with gloves and how to use gloves as your real hands basically. This week and next weeks project includes the process of photographing all of the Oscar Bluemner works that we do not have in Past Perfect…which is WAY more than you would expect. The hardest process is truly finding the drawing or painting since we constantly move the pieces to other boxes if they don’t fit or if they are in mats for frames. Luckily so far I have masters looking at incredibly small print and moving pieces carefully before and after pictures. I have actually really enjoyed looking at the different works that I have never seen. My favorites have been his colored pencils and ink sketches. You can see the talent that he had during his life and it amazes me the way that some believe it wasn’t good enough.
I am excited to finish the process of going through the boxes next week because I saved the biggest boxes for last so I am excited to see what else we have. Many of the pieces I have to photograph have not been shown off in the Hand Art Center as much so it is nice to see how well kept they are in the boxes. I think that last ones that I look through will be the best and biggest that has still been unseen by the community and that we could possibly show next year.
May 30th and 31st –
This was the beginning days of my internship at the Hand Art Center working under Tonya Curran. Today I was taught the process of scoring the walls in order to get ready for a new exhibit that would be displayed over the summer. Scoring is the process of taking out art hardware filling the holes with Spackle. I have not really used this before so it was definitely a new experience to do. After filling the holes I sanded them and then repainted the walls before I could hang the art and level it out on the wall. I believe that this was a fun learning experience as I got to know the other people working in the museum alongside me.
The next day was the first day of being able to dive into the Oscar Bluemner exhibit, which I really enjoyed! We took the exhibit down and I was able to take them out of the frames and finally got to learn about the vault! I had taken museology with Tonya prior to this internship so I was aware of the work that I would be handling and taking care of. I was taught the documentation software Past Perfect and learned the beginnings of it. My favorite part of putting away the art was truly getting to see all of the works that I had not yet seen. I like the ability to be able to put it away and document it on my own with the guidance of Tonya.