Yesterday, David Pantalony from University of Ottawa and the Canada Science and Technology Museum gave a talk in Medical Museion’s MUSE seminar series titled ‘Examine first, ask what it is later: The multiple interpretations of 20th century scientific artifacts’.
David’s presentation gave rise to an intense discussion and an interesting stream of twitter-comments that are eternalised on Storify here.
Some excerpts from the Twitter comments here:
- Engaging objects is a way of resisting a textual constriction of knowledge
- Maybe you cld say that an ‘exhibition curator’ *cares* for objects, while an ‘exhibitionist’ shows off
- Did Pantalony just say: “I don’t really understand exhibitions” ?
- Bottom-up curatorship is a good example of biopolitical production (vide Negri) – after all Latin ‘cura’ means ‘care’
- “Going into the collection my goal is to learn about the world. Not the history of specific technology” (David Pantalony)
- Wonderful to hear a exhibition curator (@SciTechCurator) who takes the collected object as his evident point of departure
- Collection multitude vs. cultural Empire (to paraphrase Hardt and Negri)
- Museum collections are an “immovable foundation of diversity” in a culturally and politically homogenous landscape
- Pantalony: Museum collections as source of diversity to counter cultural, political, artistic & intellectual homogeneity in society.
- Medical device arrives at museum painted one color. Doesn’t mean it spent its working life in that particular skin
- Pantalony neatly gestalts his points about the need for a close engagement with objects through his own enthusiasm.
- Where to start when starting from a museum object? How about asking if people *like* it and why?
- David (@SciTechCurator) radiates a unadulterated love for objects; very contagiuos
- Pantalony persuasive on starting from the object for curation, display, and also teaching and staff encounters
- Museum objects as trophees!