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What a Mess! Claiming a Space for Undergraduate Student Experimentation in the University Museum

By Janet Marstine


Full text of this item is not currently available on the LRA. \ud The final published version is available at, Doi: 10.1080/09647770701628644.A now common phenomenon at university museums that prioritize teaching is the museologically considered exhibition created by undergraduate student curators. Such exhibitions can convey fresh perspectives that traditional institutional narratives do not. They have the potential to empower student curators and their visitors to see how choices that museums make impact the way we interpret objects and understand the relationship between past and present. Allowing for the messiness of student experimentation (while maintaining best practice and also diverging from conventional practice through the use of such things as dialogical wall texts, surprising juxtapositions, and critical responses to other in-house exhibitions) inspires emerging museum professionals and constituents to imagine new possibilities for the museum and to develop skills in the leadership of change. The Hood Museum of Art at Dartmouth College and the Tang Teaching Museum and Art Gallery at Skidmore College serve as a useful paradigm. Artist Fred Wilson has had residencies at both, creating an environment conducive to student experimentation

Topics: Critical museum theory, Fred Wilson, Museological experimentation, Student curator, Student exhibition, Teaching museum, University museum
Publisher: Taylor & Francis (Routledge)
Year: 2007
DOI identifier: 10.1080/09647770701628644
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