Category talk:Exhibit Planning

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Thoughts for Discussion

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  • Another topic for discussion: The text in greyed blocks-- I think these are less effective in the online format. And I think the language could be used as strong introductions or final statements in the sections. For example- " A successful museum exhibit fulfills its eduction al intent, is aesthetically engaging, and protects the objects on display" may be an eye catcher in print, but that doesn't translate to me in the same way on the screen. I think this could be a powerful intro statement to the 'Conservation and the Exhibit Process section. Dsenge, 21 May 2020.
  • RE: the greyed blocks - I agree that the first two in this section (including " Conservation is a thread to be woven through the four stages of exhibit development and production: planning, design, fabrication, and installation." which is almost fully repeated at the start of the next paragraph) could be incorporated better into the text, but the ones after that are also good stand alone points. I think we'll find that there are those among us (me, too) who will still skim alot of writing and look for main ideas, so it could be useful to keep them in some way, but maybe do some redesign work in this new format? JBosworth, 2 June 2020.
  • I actually like the greyed blocks - it allows for an introduction that those familiar with the topic do not necessarily need to read, and visually breaks up the page. LGoldberg June 3, 2020
  • Discussed on 6/3 resolved that for now blocks can be moved around if their placement seems odd. Having some pithy text jump out at the viewer is nice, but we tabled this discussion for now as our approach may change as we consider how to integrate the Standards & Guidelines texts. The box at present was a low maintenance way that I chose to highlight the text that was on the left-hand side of the CD-ROM content. There is not reason why the format cannot be easily changed going forward.--RPArenstein (talk) 15:49, 3 June 2020 (CDT)


Resolution of Discussions (to date!)

Adding References & Links

  • MWG S&S committee suggests adding links to other sections within the bulleted lists (with specific reference to materials selection). Lgoldberg, 6 May 2020 (CDT). Agreed - adding references and links to resources within the wiki outside elsewhere online is an essential editing task for for everyone! --RPArenstein (talk) 15:49, 3 June 2020 (CDT)

Exhibit Conservator/Conservator/Preventive Conservator

  • Jbosworth and RPArenstein suggest discussing whether we want to continue to use the term Exhibit Conservator or broaden to Preventive Conservator or another term. Toby was pushing for exhibit conservation to be seen as an area of specialization. 20 years later I think there is broader agreement that preventive conservation or collection care is seen that way. So should the language be adjusted accordingly?--RPArenstein (talk) 08:58, 17 May 2020 (CDT)
  • I agree that the term Exhibit Conservator could be broadened to Conservator or Preventive Conservator. Dsenge, 21 May 2020.
  • Based on the 5/3 discussion there is some consensus that we should use generally use conservator and, when appropriate, exhibit conservator when the context implies the conservator working on that exhibit. We may want to stay away from Exhibit Conservator (capitalized) as a job title and the same for preventive conservator. --RPArenstein (talk) 15:49, 3 June 2020 (CDT)

What kinds of collections

  • Should the word 'object' or 'objects' be replaced with 'museum collections' OR should we define that the use of the word object or objects is inclusive of all 2- and 3-D museum collections? This is specifically standing out to me in the Preservation-Responsible Planning section. Dsenge, 22 May 2020.
  • As discussed on 6/3 there appeared to be consensus that we can replace the word objects with collections where appropriate. Lauren Fly and Jennifer Herrmann will annotate the introductory text describing the scope as being object focuses acknowledging that this is in the process of revision and linking to BPG and PSG resources where appropriate for now. --RPArenstein (talk) 15:49, 3 June 2020 (CDT)
  • Addition of "For the purpose of these guidelines, the term "object" may refer to three-dimensional pieces but also photographs, books, parchments, or any other cultural heritage placed in an exhibit display case." in second paragraph of intro. --Jherrmann (talk) 06:46, 4 June 2020 (CDT)

Suggestions for revision

  • MWG S & would like to add a sub-heading in this section on Materials Selection and Identifying object vulnerabilities as pertaining to materials choice. Lgoldberg, 6 May 2020 (CDT)


  • MWG S&S suggests putting in a few sentences and/or linking to other sections on the importance of materials choice in exhibit design. Lgoldberg, 6 May 2020 (CDT)
  • We'll need to update the Photography section- many photographers use cool LED or a mix of LED & warm/hot (not as intense as 500W quartz) modeling lights for strobes. I don't know a lot about it nor have I tried collecting temperature data in our photo labs close to where objects are shot (I may start doing this when back to "normal" at work). Anyone know of studies or anecdotal data about this that could help update this section? Our photographer said "Many studios are converting to LED lights which are super bright with no heat output, but expensive and don't offer as many modifiers (light shaping). Photographically there are pros and cons to both and I imagine conservators may favor the LED over hot lights and of course have little use for flash. Many photogs prefer strobes to freeze the movement of people or inanimate objects. My opinion is that strobe and LED are the best of both worlds for photography and conservation." JBosworth, 3 June 2020

Revisions to Review

[use this section to log revisions that you'd like the larger group to review if you need more detail than can be succinctly put into the Summary field when you save your edits]

Glossary Terms

[add glossary terms pulled out from the text until we decide where to put them!]

Working Group meeting Log

June 3, 2020 The focus of this meeting centered on the following topics:

  • While we respect the original text, we recognize that 20 years after its publication editing is necessary. Minor edits that everyone should feel comfortable doing involve adding/deleting/reorganizing and re-formatting text to clarify work, expand ideas, add context etc. These are all appropriate and can be done by all members of the group. Please try to note your edits in the Summary field so that edits can be easily tracked in the history page. If you make more substantial edits that you'd like discussed by the group or reviewed by NPS staff please also annotate them in the Revisions to Review section above on this talk page.
  • Major edits that involve larger movements of text or changes in guidelines and concepts should be discussed by the group. An example would be the discussions about Air Exchange rates initiated by JTetrault. These discussions can take place by email, or included on the monthly calls.
  • We may need more/different introductory text (JBottkol suggestion). On the main landing page or within a narrative section? The need for a discussion on exhibit fatigue and the permanence of exhibits was suggested (Mbreuker). Where should these be placed?
  • Jbottkol suggested having a glossary of terms. That can be begun as a page now. RPArenstein mentioned the hope that the popup feature available on wikipedia might be a plugin that we can utilize in a future upgrade of AIC's mediawiki version. For now we can at least start collecting important terms on the discussion page.
  • Discussion of the placement of the Standards & Guidelines text and how to better integrate them into the narrative was begun. Ensuring that we provide information and the different levels of text is important. RPArenstein proposed having a small group work with her, Tvoellinger and Fdevlin to do a test case with one standard to discuss in July. Please email RPArenstein if you would like to work on this.
  • Lfly and Jherrmann discussed an edit to the About the Guidelines see #What kinds of collections above.
  • After the NPS staff had to leave the call the group discussed the use of #Exhibit Conservator/Conservator/Preventive Conservator see above.
  • Kbrooks gave a brief summary of a call with Tvoellinger and RPArenstein that focuses on images and illustrations. He has been working on pulling and reformatting original images. Some of which will be appropriate for adding now. New and updated drawings will be necessary in some sections. Submitting images will be a great way for members of the broader community to contribute. The goal is to have some of the sections on case design have an interactive component down the road.
  • The group felt that there was more to discuss on this section and next month we would continue to focus on Exhibit Planning and the issue of the Guidelines and Standards.


MWG meeting: Voellinger reported that she had discussed with Felicity that "exhibit conservator" as a term is out and would prefer "preventive conservator" globally as a term in this document.

For "Integrating Conservation into the Exhibit Process" section": change bullet 2 sentence: "...review of technical designs, testing and discussion of proposed materials, case prototypes...."

The Exhibit Process:

First sentence "The development and production of an exhibit are organic processes" feels like a "fluff statement" - remove?

First introductory paragraph for "Conservation and the Exhibit Process" should be re-written as less negative; by making it more collaborative in narrative, we will encourage more buy-in.

"Conservation and the Exhibit Process", under "Design" make more global (other issues besides off-gassing, and basic materials selection issues that come up in the next couple of sections. PSilence: also add in a "shout-out" for sustainability in materials choice. LCipera: somewhere to set the context for what you are dealing with. CLeckie: exhibit context seems to be missing (permanent, temporary, rotation, traveling ...for example) - refers to JTetrault's document of considering objects the context of agents of deterioration and how they are being used in the exhibit context. PSilence: add to "Installation" that rotations should be added in JHerrmann: suggests putting exhibit context in the planning section or (CLeckie) does it need its own bullet higher up than Design?

Discussion of text vs standards: PSilence: incorporate two JHerrmann: plea for keeping two separate - because the standard is overwhelming, whereas the general text allows entry LGoldberg: suggests linking out bullet sections to standards sections or to the whole standard JHerrmann. and TVoellenger.

Under "Fabrication" : CLeckie suggests adding language to assure "verification" of receipt of materials ordered, and addressing the issue of involving contractors in the fabrication process. (JTetrault - "quality control")

PDF Image: Figure 1 (Conservation and the Exhibit Process) CLeckie: feels that many of the issues surrounding context apply here. for example there is nothing about "quality control" or "verification" here LGoldberg: wouldn't it be wonderful if the categories on the PDF could be linkable? MKing: possible to do via a powerpoint? ( David Thickett does this with Memori....) CLeckie: we will have to decide if images capture the modern context...this is a good example. A simple way to link might be to add a side bar to the image that includes a list with links. PDF Image: Figure 2 (Checklist for Conservation Involvement) Patti: might change some of the nuance, and add Example (CLeckie) add "verification" under "Fabrication" JTetrault: "testing ventilation" is unclear

The Exhibit Team CLeckie: likes that it is an iterative process JTetrault: what should be done if there is a lack of time? Add a section on what to do if something goes wrong, unexpected.... LGoldberg: Risk assessment is not a topic covered in these documents PSilence: link to Collection Care section that deals with "Agents of Deterioration," and risk assessment discussions there, rather than expounding and expanding the wiki section here to include it.

Specifications and Production Staff (above) CLeckie: add who is responsible for conversation about who is doing verification and communication flow

Finding a Conservator JTetrault and LGoldberg: add a section on "finding a scientist" or how to get testing done, or link to MWG pages? CLeckie: ....or evaluating a material (not everyone needs a conservation scientist, and Jean T responds with comments about costs of testing) CLeckie and JTetrault: a section on "Choosing Materials" earlier on, or also something here, or in both places?

Preservation-Responsible Planning

Guide this section with the concept of risk assessment, and re-write. Understanding inherent risk assessment in the context of the object....

In "Initial Selection" need to add same to corresponding guideline

The Role of the Conservator PSilence: add in risk assessment statement here

- made some changes with regards to adding the idea of risk assessment to several sentences

Evaluating Objects CLeckie is concerned with adding in the idea of the agents of deterioration, especially an evaluation of catastrophic risk CLeckie suggests regrouping "Mitigating factors" to mirror the agents of deterioration so that risks are grouped in this way. (put side by side catastrophic and cumulative, so that they can be seen side by side)

"Collections Management"

Update photography to include LED lights

Include a bullet on verification statement for conservation criteria and design criteria (add as first bullet and then add a paragraph)) Include a bullet on mounts/physical security of the object