Sunday, 26 April 2009

The museum/academic divide, museum labels and mobile-accessible interpretation...

This post from the Smarthistory blog, Writing the Museum Label on a Wiki (and some other ideas), very neatly brings together some of the proposals and conversations from MW2009.

The authors suggest two 'notions' to bring about greater collaboration between museum educators (in the broadest sense) and academics, starting with the premise that:

For some time now, we have been publicly questioning the division that exists between two professional groups tasked with educating the public about art: those in museums (curators and educators) and those in the academy (art historians). These two communities share expertise that is sought by the museum visitor and the student, yet they rarely meet, too often do not attend the same conferences, and almost never collaborate.

I won't pre-empt their notions here - go and read the article, but I just wanted to highlight this quote:

Can the tired modernist fiction that the direct experience of the object must remain unencumbered by the frame of context really still be operative?

I really hope not!

(As an aside, my inner web geek is hugely amused by the irony of the '403' contained within the URL of the article - 403 is the HTTP status code for 'access forbidden'.)

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