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APY 414SEM - Museum Management

Museum and collection management and research is motivated by two things: a love of objects, and a fascination with the ways in which they speak about the past and present. The care of artifacts cannot stop at identification, physical conservation and exhibition. Research about museum and collection objects must be seen as part of a larger task: an exploration of the social and cultural significance of objects in relation to each other and to the people who made, used, and kept them as well as who collected them. Conservation must include preservation of the information accompanying an object, information beyond provenance, or artifact type. Finally, curatorial research entails a critical awareness of our own culturally-bound responses to artifacts. This course prepares students for research in the museum environment, and for the challenge of developing meaning and value for those collections in the context of the Cravens Collection housed since March 2010 in the Anderson Gallery of the UB College of Arts and Sciences where the course will be held. Each class integrates presentations, group work and discussion, case studies, and independent research. In addition, the instructor will facilitate visits from guest lecturers. At the end of the course, the students will curate together their own public exhibition of objects from the Cravens Collection and will write up short narratives about the objects they have studied during the course. The narratives will then be included in an exhibition catalogue. N.B.: Please note that the course will take place in the Anderson Gallery of the UB College of Arts and Sciences (1 Martha Jackson Place).
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Spring 2019
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