Wednesday, 14 November 2007

Museum Love

Since I'm sure that by now many of you are sick and tired of hearing how much I love my job at the museum I thought I should warn you before I launch into raptures...

Right, so you've been warned!

I had a really good day at the museum today! I've been given more and more responsibility recently and am enjoying all sorts of new projects. In conjunction with the museum's reopening a number of new initiatives are being considered and I'm involved in the rewriting of the museum's promotional material. One of the curators and I began by creating a brand-new 5 page bilingual illustrated leaflet. While I really enjoy variety, one of the few complaints I have about working at the museum is that I seem to be endlessly starting new things but never finishing them. The bilingual pamphlet, however, was an exception as I inputted the Japanese text at the start, translated/wrote the English text, had a voice in lay-out, and then finally copied and folded the first 50 copies before formally presenting a copy to the director and placing them in the exhibit space. I proud to add that those first 50 copies disappeared quickly and a professional printers are to be used for subsequent printings! Now I realize my role was nothing more than that of assistant to the curator, it was still awesome to be involved at all steps along the way! Today I spent about 30 minutes discussing modifications and improvements to be made with the curator in charge.

I've also been involved with the preparation for two different upcoming exhibitions-one with a museum in France and the other an individual in the US. This has me using all my languages and learning lots!

Today the curator I normally work for asked me if I'd like to tag along on a group tour that she and one of the other curators would be giving in the afternoon. It turned out to be 80 grade 4 students from a nearby elementary school! They were divided into two groups and then taken on a tour of the exhibit space and one of the historical buildings in addition to watching a short video. I hung to the back, answered a few questions and explained a few things to the kids during their free time. It was the first time in over a year that I've interacted with visitors to the museum and I both enjoyed it and noticed that it was significantly easier than the last time (taking classes in Japanese improves my language skills a lot more than teaching English ever did!). The curators suggested that I get involved in more of the group tours - both kids and adults, and also asked me to start thinking about ideas for pamphlet/worksheets for kids. (somehow I think that anything I come up with will be geared towards Brownie-age girls?!)

All of this goes along with what I am discovering to be my main interests in the museum field - museum education and visitor services.

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