Museums in a Pandemic

The traditional role of museums is to collect objects and materials of cultural and historical importance, preserve them, research them and present them to the public for the purpose of education and enjoyment. This mission becomes increasingly hard when the museum is not open to the public, and the people who work in the museum are working from home. Curators still have to go in and check the environment of the museum and check that the collection is safe, but for the most part I have not been the one going into the museum to do this. I have been in a few times to get things from my office, but I’ve rarely stayed over five to ten minutes.

The essential mission of the museum hasn’t changed, but the way we function has during this pandemic. We are unable to continue to collect artifacts during this pandemic, but we are able to continue to preserve the artifacts. We also can continue to research objects, which is one of the main things I have been doing from home. I have also been working on ways to present objects from the collection to the public virtually. As Curator of Education and Public Programs, it’s my job to find ways to present our collection and information to the public for education and enjoyment.

Today, I’ll be going to the museum to film a program to be added to our Facebook page. I hope it goes as planned. I have the script written, and I know what objects I’ll be presenting. I’m looking forward to playing with iMovie to edit what I film. Back when I was the drama club advisor at my former school, I filmed and edited the drama club productions. Back then I didn’t have a Mac, so I used a different program than iMovie, but the basics are the same.

Fingers crossed, everything goes well today. I know I won’t look great on camera because I need a haircut, but so does nearly everyone else. Honestly, I never look great on camera anyway. I’ve always taken bad pictures.

About Joe

I began my life in the South and for five years lived as a closeted teacher, but am now making a new life for myself as an oral historian in New England. I think my life will work out the way it was always meant to be. That doesn't mean there won't be ups and downs; that's all part of life. It means I just have to be patient. I feel like October 7, 2015 is my new birthday. It's a beginning filled with great hope. It's a second chance to live my life…not anyone else's. My profile picture is "David and Me," 2001 painting by artist Steve Walker. It happens to be one of my favorite modern gay art pieces. View all posts by Joe

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