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MIM Registration and Collections Management

MIM Registration and Collections Management






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  • Story about object sitting in Egypt. Didn’t know why. The packer could not receive trucks and had to find an alternate way to get the objects to the shipper.
  • One of the mount makers Mike, checks the fitting of a brass instrument on a mount.

MIM Registration and Collections Management MIM Registration and Collections Management Presentation Transcript

  • Registration & Collections Mgmt
    • Major Responsibilities
      • Installation – currently top priority with about 25% left to install
      • Acquisition and processing – getting the collection in the door
      • Moving out of temporary facility in Tempe
      • Setting up permanent storage (layout and storage mounts)
      • Documenting the collection
    • Staffing Information
      • Currently 24 people
        • 3 assistant registrars
        • 1 collections manager
        • 1 database administrator
        • 1 photographer
        • 1 documentation specialist
        • 8 preparators
        • 8 collections technicians
  • The Collection
      • Over 13,000 objects in the collection
      • Around 5,000 on view in exhibitions
      • Objects in permanent collection include:
        • Instruments
        • Implements
        • Costumes
        • Cases
      • First object accessioned in June 2007
      • Most purchased, donations picking up since opening
      • Collection also contains a library and archival material
  • Challenges in Building the Collections
    • Shipping and Customs
      • Finding packers and shippers in countries that do not usual export to museums
      • Language – often we use translators
      • Foreign Politics
      • Customs
        • CITES
        • Economic Sanctions
    • Speed
      • Expensive to use air freight but we needed objects here
      • Cataloging incomplete
      • Difficult to provide proper collections care when moving so fast
    • Space
      • Collection moved five times as it outgrew its space
  • Package Damaged in Memphis Flood
  • Challenges in Collections Care
    • Moved into building while construction was being completed – had to work closely with contractors to provide safe access to installed exhibits
    • Great visitor experience results in several major challenges for collections care
      • Lighting in the galleries
      • Access in the galleries
      • Housekeeping – cleaning the exhibits is taking about 20 hrs/wk
    • New building with great environmental system but still learning how to use it
    • Playing the collection for demonstrations
    • Storage space
  • Decap Dance Organ
  • Installation
  • Installation – Artist Gallery, John Lennon’s Piano
  • Our Next Steps
    • Finish installation of Phase I
    • Finish move from temporary facility
    • Culling the large collections that were purchased as lots
    • Organize collections and create storage mounts
    • Organize, house and catalog archival materials
    • Standardize database entry
    • Policies and procedures
  • Lessons Learned
    • Communication is critical
      • Ask a lot of questions
      • Don’t assume
      • Verify and confirm
    • Be Flexible and Innovative
      • Be ready to choose the lesser of two evils
      • Think about long-term
    • Build an amazing team that you don’t have to micromanage!