Monday, October 28, 2013

Questions, Questions - " "Following our Path: Regis College through its Art Collection"

Sarah Vedrani, Undergraduate Student

While developing this exhibit, we’ve asked ourselves a lot of questions: about certain pieces, about the flow of the exhibit, about every aspect of this project. But questions are good! They help us work through the issues we’re dealing with and come up with some creative solutions. Here’s some of the questions we’ve asked ourselves so far:

What pieces will/will not be included in the exhibit?
We’ve only got so much space in the gallery, so this is an important question to ask. The big thing was selecting pieces that fit in with the big idea of our exhibit, which has three main parts: education, tradition, and service. Creating those three parts has made the selection process somewhat easier. 

But, we can’t have everything. Pieces that did not fit our big idea, or that were too large or too damaged to display, were not chosen.

How will the exhibit flow?
I think one of the toughest things about this exhibit has been that we started out with many two dimensional objects, and not enough three dimensional objects. Part of the exhibit title is “art and artifacts”, so we had to figure out how we could incorporate artifacts into the exhibit without losing our initial vision. 

Three dimensional objects also help to visually break up the space, and help the exhibit feel more like an exhibit, and not like an art gallery.

Who were the Morrisons?
One of the important lessons we’ve learned in developing this exhibit so far is that we’re all too familiar with our subject and with museum jargon and ideas.

We wanted to include in the exhibit a space to talk about how the College came to be, and the Morrisons are a huge part of that. Fannie Morrison sold the property that is now the College to the Sisters of Saint Joseph in 1927; her father had bought the property in 1888 and had built Morrison House, which now serves as our President’s House.

WE all knew that, but would the visitor? We’ve learned through this that our labels need to be simple and understandable for our visitors, but not so simple that we’re dumbing down what we’re trying to say. That makes label writing a difficult process!

These are not the only questions we’ve asked so far, and they definitely won’t be the last. Developing an entire exhibit is a lengthy process, but I think that all of our questioning shows that we’re learning, and we’re trying to work through everything. Hopefully, we’ll come out with some good answers by the end, and not more questions!

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