1. Lonnie G. Bunch III, founding director of the National Museum of African American History and Culture (NMAAHC), offers his perspective on the noose that was placed at NMAAHC and other locations on the National Mall. This is a must read and reminds us of the important space of dialogue museums provide.
So, what does it mean to have found three nooses on Smithsonian grounds in 2017? A noose inside a Missouri high school? A noose on the campus of Duke University? Another at American University?
2. This long read dives into the evolving place of art and culture over the the past few decades in London while considering challenges facing the sector in the current climate.
In 1970, if you had said that London would one day become the centre of the international art world, the successor to Paris before the first world war and New York after the second, most people would have thought you mad.
3. Speaking of these challenges facing museums, especially those of financial sustainability — Chris Michaels, Digital Director of the National Gallery (U.K.), thinks its time to “think about how lessons from the digital economy can reshape [museums’] commercial engagement with our audience.”
Visitor numbers have grown to record highs over the last 15 years, driven by global tourism; by their opening up to the web and digital media, and the brilliance of a legendary generation of great directors led by Neil MacGregor at the British Museum and Nicholas Serota at the Tate.
4. Now how about a little science? Popular Science explores how researchers are working to keep cultural heritage safe from microorganisms — the “tiny invaders.”
We’re used to seeing famous works of art and historical artifacts marred by the elements. They can be eroded by wind and water, faded by sunlight, or nibbled by insects. But cultural relics can also be damaged by hordes of even tinier invaders: bacteria, fungi, and algae.
5. Tracy Truels, Director of Learning and Engagement at the Oklahoma City Museum of Art, thinks about the role of leadership and how vision could be most effective and sustained if it were better distributed across staff.
This week’s guest post is by Tracy Truels, Director of Learning and Engagement at Oklahoma City Museum of Art. Tracy has also worked at museums in Houston and New York. In addition to her work in museums, Tracy is a writer of fiction and operas.
Do you have a great museum story to share?