Archive for the 'Behind the scenes' Category

Intern Perspective: Planning and Promoting Happenings at the Gibbes

Since January, I have been gifted with the opportunity to intern behind the scenes at the Gibbes. Before my internship began, I was not sure of what I was getting myself into. Of course my mind went to the two extremes: I would either be licking envelopes and getting coffee or I would be overwhelmed with tough work and little explanation. Instead, I have had an entirely different experience working as the Museum Relations intern for the past four months. I felt welcomed from day one and have truly enjoyed working with the small staff who are able to keep the successful museum flourishing.

Although I am from Rye, New York, I have grown up spending tons of my time in Charleston with both my immediate and my extended family and have always considered this amazing city my second home. I am a junior at the College of Charleston double majoring in Art History and Communication. Two summers ago I had the opportunity to work with Rebecca Sailor, the Associate Curator of Education, helping her with the Gibbes Summer Art Camp. That experience showed me what a great connection the museum truly had with its surrounding community. Last Fall, when I was considering taking on an internship during the school year my uncle and local artist, John Dunnan, suggested I apply to the Gibbes. Right away, I knew this was a brilliant idea and after meeting with Marla Loftus and Lasley Steever, I was thrilled to accept the position. Although I have interned at the museum before, the experience offered with the Public Relations and Event Planning departments seemed like an opportunity I should not refuse. I was told I would have a very hands-on position and learn both simple and complex tasks that would be beneficial in the long run.

The models' finalé walk on the Flirting with Art runway.

For the past four months I have been able to assist with Public Relations, Event Planning, and Social Media for the Gibbes. I have been fortunate to learn so much about several different things that are involved with all of these jobs. From posting press releases and managing PR mentions to planning parties and posting tweets, there is always something to get done. One of my favorite events that I was lucky enough to be a part of was Flirting with Art in February. I enjoyed helping organize and plan this extravagant and modern runway show and loved being there to experience all of the hard work put into action. It was exhilarating watching the process while local artists interpreted the art of modern painters with a mix of styles using the human body as the canvas.

Recently, I was able to get involved with the opening of open two new exhibitions commemorating the 150th anniversary of the start of the Civil War: A Soldier’s View of Civil War Charleston and Stephen Marc: Passage on the Underground Railroad. The extraordinary connections I have seen made between the permanent collection and the the temporary exhibitions has been awe-inspiring. I love working with people who share my passion for both art and education and hope that the Gibbes Museum will continue to thrive in this historical and artistic city. I have enjoyed my experience here at the Gibbes that has been filled with both learning and excitement and I hope to keep a close connection with all of the staff and members for a long time to come!

Clay Dunnan, Museum Relations Intern, January through May 2011

Mrs. Gilmor goes to New York

After clearing a conservation assesment, Mrs. Gilmor is ready to be put into her crate.

How do you prepare for upcoming travel? Perhaps you check the weather for your destination and reconfirm transit arrangements. You might make sure luggage is in suitable condition and your accommodations are up to par. Maybe you review your travel wardrobe or purchase new travel clothing. Interestingly, preparing artwork to travel is not all that different. As Director of Collections Administration, I think a lot about how artwork is going to travel out of the museum, out of the state, or even out of the country. One of my responsibilities is to act as travel agent and personal assistant to artwork in the Gibbes collection. I make sure each piece is in good physical condition to travel; clear itineraries with Gibbes curators who may need particular works for upcoming exhibitions; make sure each piece has a travel container; and oversee all transit arrangements.

The outgoing loan of Mrs. Robert Gilmor, Jr. (Sarah Reeve Ladson) by Thomas Sully (American, 1783–1872) is a good example of this process. As you have probably heard (or seen in the January issue of Charleston Magazine), this lovely painting—along with five other pieces from our collection—is preparing for a whirlwind trip to New York City where she will be featured in the loan exhibition at the Winter Antiques Show. The exhibition, Grandeur Preserved: Masterworks Presented by Historic Charleston Foundation, will highlight more than fifty objects selected from Charleston’s leading cultural institutions as well as private collections. Mrs. Gilmor will be a star in this show, and I (the personal assistant and travel agent) have been preparing her trip for many months.

Let me share some details of Mrs. Gilmor’s travel itinerary and preparations. Historic Charleston Foundation invited Mrs. Gilmor to participate in this exhibition over a year ago. Thankfully that was plenty of time to clear her social schedule in terms of upcoming exhibitions at the Gibbes. In addition to the “invitation,” or outgoing loan request, we received a facility report for the exhibition destination which contains important details about the loan venue’s security, lighting, and climate control, as well as information about how our painting would be installed and who would install it. These documents had to be approved by the Collections Committee and Board of Directors of the Gibbes Museum of Art. We also approved the details of her travel arrangements. Thomas Sully painted Mrs. Gilmor in 1823. She is 188 years old and prefers to travel in style. Fortunately, she already owns a custom crate which keeps her safe and comfortable during transit. Mrs. Gilmor traveled to China in this crate several years ago and enjoyed the security it provided.

A view of the interior and exterior crates used to protect Mrs. Gilmor in transit.

Another part of the outgoing loan process is scheduling a thorough conservation assessment. Think of this as the physical check-up sometimes needed prior to strenuous travel. Before Mrs. Gilmor was approved for loan, I reviewed her condition with an art conservator to make sure that the paint surface was stable and her frame was solid with all gilding intact. Any needed repairs must be scheduled well in advance of the actual travel dates—timing is everything when it comes to outgoing loan preparation. Fortunately, Mrs. Gilmor is in wonderful condition. She had some work done (shhhh) before the afore-mentioned trip to China and is in great shape to travel to New York City.

The painting is secured in an interior box before being set into the travel crate.

While Mrs. Gilmor required no grooming for this particular trip, I did prepare a detailed condition report. Condition reports contain images and a complete description of any flaws or vulnerable areas that exist on a work before it is released for travel. Condition reports are very important and must be reviewed when loans reach their destinations. While only the most qualified museum professionals handle and transport loans, it’s always good to have written documentation of a painting’s pre-loan condition… just in case.

Preparator Greg Jenkins inserts foam blocks to secure the interior case containing the painting.

Now here we are, just days away from Mrs. Gilmor’s trip to New York City. I have been in touch with the shippers and confirmed her transit itinerary. Her accommodations at the Park Avenue Armory are ready and I am in possession of the very detailed installation plan. She is secure in her crate and ready to go. I will be in New York to greet her upon arrival and make sure she is comfortable in her temporary surroundings. As a personal assistant to artwork, sometimes when you request an outgoing loan from the Gibbes… you get me too!

See you in New York!

Zinnia Willits, Director of Collections Administration, Gibbes Museum of Art

Other works of art traveling to New York City from the Gibbes Museum’s collection include:

View of Mulberry, House and Street, ca. 1805, by Thomas Coram (American, 1756 – 1811). Oil on paper; 4 1/16 x 6 11/16 inches. Museum Purchase (1968.018.0001)

Eliza Izard (Mrs. Thomas Pinckney, Jr.), 1801, by Edward Greene Malbone (American, 1777 – 1872). Watercolor on ivory; 2 7/8 x 2 3/8 inches. Museum Purchase (1939.004.0004)

Colonel Thomas Pinckney, Jr., 1801, by Edward Greene Malbone (American, 1777 – 1872). Watercolor on ivory; 3 x 2 3/8 inches. Museum Purchase (1939.004.0003)

Mrs. Arthur Middleton (Alicia Hopton Russell Middleton), 1836, by Andrew Robertson (Scottish, 1777 – 1845). Watercolor on ivory; 3 5/8 x 2 3/4 inches. Gift of Alicia Hopton Middleton (1937.005.0002)

Charlotte Helen Middleton and her enslaved nurse, Lydia, 1852, by George Smith Cook (American, 1819 – 1902). Ambrotype. Gift of Alicia Hopton Middleton (1937.005.0010)

New Exhibitions, New Experiences

Hello everyone! My name is Andrew Ochsner and I’m the fall intern in the Gibbes Collections department. I thought I’d take advantage of the blog to share a little bit about my experiences here at the museum. As a recent Art History graduate from the College of Charleston with a strong interest in the Museum field, I was drawn to the Gibbes as way to gain valuable experience for the future. Working with the Collections department staff I’ve been learning about the fascinating behind-the-scenes efforts required to manage, maintain, and exhibit a fine art collection. Thus far I’ve assisted with everything from cataloguing objects into our Past Perfect virtual database, to meticulously packing up art works for storage and shipment.

One of the initial projects I had the pleasure to work on was the gallery preparation for the two wonderful exhibits that opened on September 3—Face Lift: The Power of Portraits, and Stacy Lynn Waddell: The Evidence of Things Unseen. I must say I was truly amazed by the extent of planning and physical labor that went into readying the museum space for opening night! It took nearly two weeks of transition time in the Main and Rotunda galleries for the previous exhibits, Modern Masters from the Ferguson Collection and JoAnn Verburg: Interruptions to be taken down, and the new exhibits to be installed and ready for show. Not yet a seasoned gallery-prep pro like Director of Collections Administration, Zinnia Willits, and Operations Director and Preparator, Greg Jenkins, I helped out anywhere my common sense could come in handy. This included tasks such as adhering the large vinyl title lettering to the gallery walls, which I quickly learned can be a rather tricky (and at times sticky) affair.

Wall Text
Vinyl lettering, not as easy as it looks…

Other jobs included cutting the individual squares of Velcro that were used to hang all sixty pieces of paper that comprise Stacy Lynn Waddell’s striking large-scale work, Manifest (2010).

Manifest
Manifest, 2010, by Stacy Lynn Waddell (American, b. 1966) 88 x 166 inches
Look at all that singed paper!

One of the last duties I helped with is called staging, which involves the organizing and placing of the art and title cards in their designated locations within the galleries. This literal “staging” makes things much easier for Greg when it finally comes time to hang the art on the wall. On opening night it was very gratifying to see all the hard work that the Gibbes staff (including myself) put into beautifying the gallery space for the exhibits! Preparing for new exhibitions is only a small fraction of what being collections intern here at the Gibbes entails. I’ve learned a great deal since beginning my internship here in August, and continue to do so every time I come into the museum. Well, I’m off to photograph some beautiful silver pieces for our digital catalogue!

Andrew Ochsner, fall intern, Collections Department, Gibbes Museum of Art

Revisiting The Charleston Story: New Works on View

<em>Untitled</em>, by Nell Choate Shute
Untitled, ca. 1940s-50s, by Nell Choate Shute (American, 1898–1966), 2010.005.0002B

Have you visited the Gibbes lately? If so, you may notice new faces in the building. Yes, we do have a few new staff members, but I am referring to the new paintings and works on paper on display in The Charleston Story. Ok, they are not really new in the sense that they were just created—although a few of the works are new acquisitions—but many of these pieces have been in storage for a while so they are new to our visitors. Confused yet?

Let’s start over. Each January and July we rotate objects on display in The Charleston Story, a fabulous exhibition that showcases the range and depth of the Gibbes permanent collection. The Charleston Story is installed in nine different galleries throughout the museum and currently includes over 150 works of art. However, this is only a small fraction of the Gibbes permanent collection which contains over 1500 paintings and miniature portraits and 4000 works of art on paper! Objects are rotated in and out of the ongoing exhibition so we can share as many works as possible with our visitors. Object changes also serve a conservation purpose. Over time, all objects can change or deteriorate as a result of environmental conditions. The major environmental factors that affect the long-term preservation of objects are light, relative humidity, and temperature. Works on paper are especially susceptible to light so we store them in cool, dark containers after six months on display. How an object is handled, displayed, and stored can mean the difference between preserving it for many years or for only a short time.

Rotating objects in The Charleston Story is a group effort and requires months of pre-planning. Sara Arnold, our Curator of Collections, chooses the objects for the exhibition. She must consider how a particular piece will fit the theme of each section as well as how it will fit visually with other works in the gallery. Sara also researches each object and writes descriptions about the artist or subject matter—no small task! Once Sara selects the objects for the rotation, I enter the picture. As Director of Collections Administration, one of my responsibilities is to oversee the movement of artwork within the building. I identify an object’s storage location, remove the object from storage, and assess its overall condition. Greg Jenkins, the museum’s preparator, then completes any matting and framing required for exhibition.

Objects Being Prepared for Installation
Objects are pulled from storage and prepared for installation.

After works are chosen, conditioned, and prepared for view, we set an installation schedule. Changing out The Charleston Story can be logistically complicated due to the fact that it spans multiple galleries. For the safety of the objects, we try to complete most art installation on Mondays when the museum is closed to the public. However, try as we might, reinstallation of galleries almost always takes longer than a day, and sometimes a week! The process of hanging art work is interesting (lots of math) but not always pretty (think hammers, drills, tape measures, tool carts, and labels). If you visit the Gibbes in January or July you may see art moving around the building or encounter a roped off gallery where we are working diligently to finish the switch. We love an audience and encourage questions from our visitors.

On installation days, Greg and I first remove works from exhibit and return them safely to storage. Next, the remaining works are taken down in preparation for a new arrangement. When the gallery walls are clear, the new additions are brought into the space. We position them around the room on carpet squares or a set of “bumpers,” which are special carpeted planks that protect ornate frames. At this point, Sara is back on the scene to determine how best to arrange the pieces within the gallery, and Greg begins to install. Once the art is on the wall, he hangs the labels, removes his tools, resets the lights, and… voila, The “new” Charleston Story. The final step includes checking the condition of works removed from exhibition and updating the object locations in our collections database.

Installation in Progress
Preparator Greg Jenkins reinstalling a wall in Gallery G.

So there you have it—another behind-the-scenes look at what your friendly museum staff does with their time. Come see what’s new—I’m off to the next project!

Zinnia Willits, Director of Collections Administration, Gibbes Museum of Art

Tour highlights of the Gibbes’ collection with one of our interactive online features.

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Curatorial Perspective: An Upcoming Exhibition Takes Shape

Manifest, 2010, by Stacy Lynn Waddell

Manifest, 2010, by Stacy Lynn Waddell (American, b. 1966)

Over the next few weeks, the Gibbes collections and curatorial staff will be hard at work in preparation for the opening of Stacy Lynn Waddell: The Evidence of Things Unseen. On view September 3 – December 5, 2010, this exhibition will feature recent work by contemporary artist Stacy Lynn Waddell in her first solo museum exhibition. Waddell’s work is a fascinating blend of painting, drawing, sculpture, collage, and installation created with her innovative technique of burning, singeing, and branding paper and canvas.

Organizing an exhibition such as this is no easy task. It is truly a team effort that requires close to two years of planning. This particular exhibition began with a series of conversations between me and the artist. Together, we hatched a plan for the overall scope of the exhibition and important details such as the dates, gallery location, number of works, etc. As luck would have it, the Weatherspoon Art Museum at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro was also interested in hosting an exhibition of Waddell’s work, and a collaboration was born.

To prepare for the exhibition, I took two trips to Durham, NC to visit Stacy in her studio, along with Xandra Eden, the Curator of Exhibitions at the Weatherspoon. Studio visits are one of the best parts of my job. I get to see artwork first hand while building a relationship with the artist—important things when curating a contemporary exhibition. During our visits with Stacy, our main objective was to select the objects for the exhibition. It was important for Stacy, Xandra, and I to meet as a group and develop an object list that worked for both venues and also matched Stacy’s vision for the show.

But selecting the works in only half the story. Once the object list is finalized we need to figure out how to pack the works, ship them to the museum, and install them in the gallery. This requires hard work and ingenuity on the part of our Director of Collections Administration, Zinnia Willits, and our Director of Operations and Preparator, Greg Jenkins. Greg and Zinnia are our resident experts on all things related to art handling, movement, and installation. In the meantime, I am busy writing an essay for the exhibition brochure, preparing label copy and text panels, planning the exhibition layout, and managing all other details of the project. Did I book Stacy a hotel room for the exhibition opening? Do we have high resolution images for our marketing materials? These are the things that pop into my head at 3 o’clock in the morning…

Many, many emails and phone calls later, we are in the home stretch. I have to say, I am really looking forward to seeing this exhibition on the gallery walls, and I know Stacy is too. Come see the final results—the exhibition opens on Friday, September 3—it should be a good time.

—Pam Wall, Curator of Exhibitions, Gibbes Museum of Art

Sharing a Love of Art History with the Next Generation

Katie Gephart, summer intern, working with camper Parker Weeks.

Katie Gephart, summer intern, with camper Parker Weeks.

My name is Katie Gephart, and this summer I interned in the museum’s Education and Outreach department. In the fall, I’ll start my senior year at Washington and Lee University where I am majoring in art history and museum studies. My university professors continue to encourage my love of art history, and now—through my internship—I’ve had the opportunity to teach other students about art. My primary responsibility was assisting with the Summer Art Camp. Over the summer, I worked with elementary school students to expand the scope of their art awareness by exposing them to new media, techniques, and sources of inspiration within the Gibbes Museum. The summer camp themes included In the Forest, Go Global, and ArtStory, and each week we created special projects that both reflected these themes and introduced the campers to important artists and artistic traditions. Sharing art history with the children and helping them translate the concepts and ideas into their own work was immeasurably rewarding.

<em>April (The Green Gown)</em>, 1920, By Childe Hassam (American, 1859 – 1935). Oil on canvas; 56 x 82 1/4 in. Gibbes Museum of Art, Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Archer Huntington (1936.09.01).

April (The Green Gown), 1920, By Childe Hassam (American, 1859 – 1935). Oil on canvas; 56 x 82 1/4 in. Gibbes Museum of Art, Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Archer Huntington (1936.09.01).

Once a week, the campers went into the galleries to explore the museum’s collection and incorporated what they saw into their art projects. Last week, ArtStory focused on an artist’s ability to tell stories without words, using only form, line, and color. We looked at the large oil painting, April: (The Green Gown) by Childe Hassam—one of my favorite paintings in the collection—and asked how the woman’s story might be different if she wore a red gown instead. The group really seemed to connect to this idea and shared how different colors make them feel. Watching the kids process this important principle of art theory and apply it to their own art work was so exciting for me to observe. The Gibbes offers its campers such a special opportunity by sharing the collection, and I’ve been so grateful to share my knowledge of art with the kids and see how their techniques improve and enthusiasm for art grows.

Katie Gephardt, summer intern, Education and Outreach Department, Gibbes Museum of Art

Sally Collins, art educator, works with campers to create their own works of art.

Sally Collins, art educator, works with campers to create their own works of art.

Learn more about public programs, classes, and camp at the Gibbes Museum of Art.

Up Close and Personal with the Gibbes’ Collection

Sarah West, a summer intern in the Curatorial and Collections Departments, handles a woodblock print by Hokusai in the Gibbes collection.

Sarah West, a summer intern in the Curatorial and Collections Departments, handles a woodblock print by Hokusai in the Gibbes collection.

I have spent the past four years staring at slide after slide of art: Jasper Johns, John Singleton Copley, Jan van Eyck … and the Johns go on. As an undergraduate at the University of Virginia, I was exposed to the cultural and social implications behind these artists and their work. I memorized myriad names and dates, and I made more flashcards than I care to count. My first-year art history class was held in a massive auditorium, and the floor to ceiling projection made each piece look more and more foreboding. Over the next three years, classes moved into smaller lecture halls, and I found myself seated at a crowded conference table, discussing the monumentality of Giotto’s use of internal modeling in the Arena Chapel. As my studies became more specific, I would occasionally find the time to visit with these works face to face in museums. I would tell anyone who would listen (so usually I was talking to myself) what I knew about the work in front of me, closing my eyes and reciting the dates aloud to see if I could remember them. It would often turn out that I could only remember half of what my teacher had so eloquently lectured, and my dates were at least five years off every time.

Limehouse, 1859, by James McNeill Whistler (American, 1834 – 1903). Etching on paper. Gibbes Museum of Art, Gift of Dr. and Mrs. Anton Vreede (2004.004.0003)

Limehouse, 1859, by James McNeill Whistler (American, 1834 – 1903). Etching on paper. Gibbes Museum of Art, Gift of Dr. and Mrs. Anton Vreede (2004.004.0003)

After graduating from U.Va in May, I returned home to Charleston to begin my summer internship with the Gibbes. I knew that I would be working with Zinnia Willits, Director of Collections Administration, and Sara Arnold, Curator of Collections, but I was not quite sure what “collections” entailed. My academic bubble of names, faces, and dates had left me completely oblivious to what goes on behind the scenes in the museum world. I understood that each work of art the traveling exhibitions at the U.Va Art Museum had come from somewhere else, but I never put any thought into who had organized the exhibit, or the hard work that was required to actually prepare and transport these works from one museum to the next. In my time with the Gibbes, I have touched (with gloves) etchings by James McNeill Whistler, drawn up a condition report on a William Merritt Chase painting, and witnessed the last minute conservation of a work by Picasso. The godlike artists of my college years have become more like aged celebrities – I still revere them, but I now know how much work has gone into keeping up their glossy façades, and just how many people it takes to get them from one venue to the next.

Sarah West, summer intern, Curatorial and Collections Departments, Gibbes Museum of Art

Still Life with Fish, 1903, by William Merritt Chase (American, 1849 – 1916). Oil on canvas. Gibbes Museum of Art, Gift of Anna Heyward Taylor 1947.011.0001

Still Life with Fish, 1903, by William Merritt Chase (American, 1849 – 1916). Oil on canvas. Gibbes Museum of Art, Gift of Anna Heyward Taylor (1947.011.0001).

<em>Femme dans un fauteuil</em>, 1956, by Pablo Picasso (Spanish, 1881 – 1973). Oil on canvas; 39 ½ x 31 ½ in. Courtesy of Esther and James Ferguson.

Femme dans un fauteuil, 1956, by Pablo Picasso (Spanish, 1881 – 1973). Oil on canvas; 39 ½ x 31 ½ in. Courtesy of Esther and James Ferguson.

Explore more of the Gibbes’ collection in our online database.

Download the Gibbes College Internship application (PDF).

On the Street with Summer Intern Laura Kovalsky

Laura Kovalsky, Gibbes Museum summer intern, en route to distribute museum rack cards.

Laura Kovalsky, Gibbes Museum summer intern, en route to distribute museum rack cards.

My name is Laura Kovalsky, and I am a summer communications intern at the Gibbes Museum of Art. I am a rising senior at the University of Alabama, but I’m enjoying living and working in Charleston for the summer. At the Gibbes—aside from my daily responsibilities of organizing press clippings, updating information for the communications department, and attending meetings—one of the most unique things that I have been able to do is a form of grassroots marketing. The museum distributes rack cards, which are flyers describing the year’s exhibitions, to local art galleries for them to display to promote current and upcoming exhibitions. For the Gibbes, rack cards are an important communication tool because they are an easily accessible way for visitors to get information about the museum.

While walking around town to different galleries, I had the opportunity to meet and talk with gallery owners and view a wide variety of artwork. I learned about the art community in Charleston and the connection many artists feel to the beautiful landscape and the people of this city. Because I am new to the Charleston area, I enjoyed finding some of the more hidden galleries and going to places that I probably would not have known about otherwise. It was a unique way to tour the city through its art. During this process of spreading the word about the Gibbes, I was actually able to learn about local artists and the city.

Download the Gibbes College Internship application (PDF).

Behind-the-Scenes: Collections Intern Project

This fall, Laura Reece, an Art History/Arts Management major at the College of Charleston, completed a semester-long internship with the Gibbes. Over the course of twelve weeks, Laura worked with me (the Collections Manager) on a variety of projects including cataloging and photographing new acquisitions, entering information in the collections database, conducting research on artists and assisting with installation of the exhibitions, Daufuskie Island: Photographs by Jeanne Moutousssamy-Ashe and Brian Rutenberg: Tidesong

Laura Reece hanging labels in the Daufuskie Island exhibition

Laura Reece hanging labels in the Daufuskie Island exhibition

Laura also worked on what has been a multi-year, multi-intern project involving the Gibbes collection of cased photographs. The collection contains over 100 examples of early photography including daguerreotypes, ambrotypes, and tintypes. These kinds of photographs were usually enclosed in miniature cases made of wood with tooled leather covers.  Cases protected the images from light, moisture, and abrasion and allowed the photographs to be easily and safely transported. Over the last three years, interns have diligently worked to better preserve and document these exceedingly rare photographs. Previous interns meticulously cataloged each item and entered the information into the collection database.  Each piece has been photographed and attempts have been made to identify the original photographer. For her part, Laura was asked to create custom flap enclosures (made of archival board) for each photograph.  Prior to this project, photographs were stored loose in archival boxes.  This storage method was not ideal as cases tended to shift each time a box was moved.  Cases also needed to be opened to see the image which required frequent handling and stress on already fragile objects.

Previous storage method for cased photographs

Previous storage method for cased photographs

Laura was given a general template for making the storage enclosures.  However, cased photographs come in many sizes which necessitated creative thinking and a little math!

Laura Reece measuring archival board

Laura Reece measuring archival board

Once the custom housings were complete, each photograph was stored safely within the flap enclosure.  Laura added the catalog number and an image to the front of each box for easy identification.

Flap enclosure

Flap enclosure

Flap enclosure, final product

Flap enclosure, final product

Enclosures were stored flat in wide archival boxes to prevent shifting and eliminate the need for stacking.
 

Cased photographs in their new storage container

Cased photographs in their new storage container

The end result is extremely satisfying to a Type-A Collections Manager such as me. The photographs are secure, organized, and can be easily identified with little handling. If we pay attention to how an object is handled, displayed, and stored, it truly can mean the difference between preserving it for many years or for only a short time. I am hopeful that our Gibbes interns have added many years to the preservation of this unique collection.

Behind the Scenes Education Program

Ashley Hall students in Jane Pelland’s 7th grade classes enjoyed two days of the Gibbes Behind the Scenes program during their Winterim. Zinnia Willits, Collections Manager, and Greg Jenkins, Facilities Manager, led the program. The students enjoyed learning about the care of art work, exhibition installation, and the various duties of the museum’s curatorial staff. 

Interested in booking this program for your group? Contact Rebecca Williams at (843) 722-2706, ext. 41.

zinnia class 002

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