Making Museums Accessible

3 minute read
Posted by Rachael Cristine Woody on 10/3/2018

During the Civil Rights era of the 1960s and 1970s a cultural and legislative transformation occurred that began the effort to protect minorities and persons with disabilities against discrimination, and advocate for their equal right to participate in all aspects of life. There is still much to be done in both the United States and Canada, and the museum world is not exempt from this work.

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Topics: Museums, Collections Management, Strategy

The Decay of Museums Leads to Irreparable Loss

3 minute read
Posted by Rachael Cristine Woody on 9/26/2018

Photo by Felipe Milane

On September 2, 2018 the Museu Nacional (Brazil’s National Museum) experienced a terrible fire that led to an estimated loss of more than 20 million specimens and artifacts – approximately 90% of its collection.

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Topics: Museums, Collections Management, Strategy

The Value of Cultural Heritage Experiences in the Museum

3 minute read
Posted by Rachael Cristine Woody on 9/19/2018

As museums have evolved, so have their exhibits. We’ve seen displays go from wax model recreations of Neanderthals, miniaturized versions of places, touch and play set ups to interactive digital panels, integrated multi-media, and even augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) set ups that enhance the exhibit experience.

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Topics: Museums, Strategy, Collections Management

On-Site or Off-Site Storage – Part 3: Preservation and Access

4 minute read
Posted by Miriam Kahn, MLS, PhD on 9/18/2018

Off-site and remote storage facilities can serve as havens for items that have long-term preservation needs. One of the triggers for moving materials to off-site and remote storage facilities is an increased need for preservation. Items that are fragile, damaged, or need long-term storage in a stable environment may be candidates for transfer to off-site storage facilities.

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Topics: Strategy, Collections Management, Special Librarianship

On-site or Off-site Storage – Part 2: Making Decisions

4 minute read
Posted by Miriam Kahn, MLS, PhD on 9/11/2018

Storing records, collections, and objects in off-site and remote storage facilities limits access to original materials. Decisions about storage affect how your staff and clientele work and their ability to access information in a timely manner. The best storage solutions minimize disruption of service and frustration.

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Topics: Strategy, Collections Management, Special Librarianship

SydneyEnterprise & The Penang House of Music - Access to Musical Heritage

1 minute read
Posted by Lucidea on 9/4/2018

The Penang House of Music is a gallery and library dedicated to documenting the diversity of the local community’s cultural and musical traditions, including popular music in Penang. It came into being as part of the Penang Musical Heritage Project (PHMP), with the support of the Penang State Government.

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Topics: SydneyEnterprise, Collections Management, Special Libraries

Who Owns Digital Culture? An Important Question Museums Must Consider

4 minute read
Posted by Rachael Cristine Woody on 8/29/2018

The ability to digitize and publish collections online through a collections management system has helped reinvent how museums present their holdings. In the beginning, there was resistance to publishing digital images of collection objects online. This was due to a (now proven false) concern that people would no longer visit the museum if they could view collections online.

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Topics: Museums, Collections Management, Strategy

On-site or Off-site Storage – Part 1: Implications of Storing Materials Off-site

6 minute read
Posted by Miriam Kahn, MLS, PhD on 8/28/2018

Our esteemed guest blogger, Miriam Kahn, has used municipal and county courthouses and record centers to compile legal, real estate and genealogical information for 20 years. She experienced the shift from print to digital, from photocopies to microfilm to digital, and from paper deliverables to digital delivery—and is very familiar with issues surrounding long-term storage of paper, audiovisual, and digital materials. We asked Miriam to bring her years of insight as an information professional and free-lance researcher to a blog series on the merits and challenges of off-site and remote storage.

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Topics: Strategy, Collections Management, Special Librarianship

Archives Collection-Level Description: Pros & Cons

3 minute read
Posted by Margot Note on 8/27/2018

Although some archivists debate the necessity for item-level access, it is often more challenging to describe images in the aggregate. Collection-level description can be useful for images of the same subject, but problematic for collections with a variety of subjects, as it neither improves retrieval nor limits the handling of the originals. Group arrangement and description are necessary for large collections or when resources are limited.

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Topics: Archives, Collections Management, Digital Archives

Archives & Item-Level Description: An Integrated Approach

2 minute read
Posted by Margot Note on 8/20/2018

Traditionally, archivists have dismissed arrangement at the item level as having little utility and being impractical for modern collections. However, archival surveys conducted over the years have found that a significant proportion of archivists have adhered to item-level description—even though it is contrary to the traditional archival practice of collection-level description. The same discrepancy between literature and practice appears to be true for visual collections.

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Topics: Digital Archives, Archives, Collections Management

Ethical, Legal, and Cultural Considerations for Digital Archival Projects

2 minute read
Posted by Margot Note on 7/23/2018

When digitizing collections, archivists should always take legal and ethical rights into consideration and proceed with caution when documenting culturally sensitive content—with sympathy as to the context of how the materials were collected, and consideration in the manner in which such content is presented.

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Topics: Digital Archives, Archives, Collections Management

Argus Turns a Museum’s Challenge into a Success; Carpe Diem

1 minute read
Posted by Lucidea on 7/11/2018

Image: University of Missouri’s Museum of Art and Archaeology

The University of Missouri’s Museum of Art and Archaeology exists to “advance…understanding of artistic and cultural heritage through research, collection and interpretation. [They] further their mission by preserving, enhancing and providing access to the collections for the benefit of present and future generations.” A museum staff of 12 (including part-time and student help) manage a collection of almost 16,000 objects, with a particularly strong antiquities collection.

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Topics: Museums, Collections Management

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