#AskACurator Day 2017 with the Guelph Museums Curatorial Team

Ask a Curator Logo. Blue circle with two white dots for eyes with a black speech bubble projected to the right.#AskACurator Day 2017 with the Guelph Museums Curatorial Team

What if you had the chance to ask the experts behind the scenes at Guelph Museums anything you wanted? #AskACurator Day is an annual social media event that aims to break down the walls of museums by inviting the public to ask any questions about the museum, the collection, local history, or the team behind it all. The sky’s the limit. We received some great questions this year and would love to share the answers from our day!

Q. How do I become a curator?
A. The road is long and winding with lots of detours. All curators have a ravenous appetite for knowledge and a compulsion for storytelling.

– Dawn Owen, Curator

Q. Is it true that the Museum first opened in the horse stables, what is now the Farmers Market?
A. True! In 1967, the Museum opened in the horse stables, now the Farmer’s Market. We moved to 6 Dublin Street in 1980 and 52 Norfolk Street in January 2012. – Ken Irvine, Education Coordinator

Q. LCol John McCrae wrote #InFlandersFields. Were any other works of his published?
A. McCrae wrote many articles for medical journals and published many poems, articles and stories in magazines, including University of Toronto’s student newspaper The Varsity. – Ken Irvine, Education Coordinator

Q. What is the oldest object in your collection?
A. We have some projectile points that date back to 7500-400 BC. – Lindsay Woelfle, Collections Assistant

projectile points that date back to 7500-400 BC

Q. What is one exhibit topic you would love to curate? Sky’s the limit!
A. A platform for art and civic practice where expressive vision and skill are the tools for storytelling and collective knowledge building.

– Dawn Owen, Curator

Q. How are you working to include the voices of marginalized communities in your exhibits and collections?
A. Through big and small conversations, all day every day, by listening, by acknowledging historical gaffes and gaps, by doing something about it.

– Dawn Owen, Curator

Q. If you could take one piece from the collection and keep it in your office with you, which would it be?
Anything film or photography related. The silent movie projector is one of my favourites. Other than I love old photos or something weird like the bust of Sir John A Macdonald – simply because he doesn’t get out much lol. | ow.ly/E9vp30f6zjt

–Lindsay Woelfle, Collections Assistant

Silent Film Projector Bust of Sir John A. Macdonald

Q. Tips for making the most out of your museum visit –from a visitor point of view?
A. You know in five minutes whether you love or hate an exhibition. If you hate it, don’t waste your time. Take a moment to understand why and then move on. – Dawn Owen, Curator

Q. Which object of the Guelph Museums collection is the smallest?
A. The smallest item in our collection is a Masonic Pin. The face of it measures 0.7 cm| ow.ly/nFSb30f6yfz – Lindsay Woelfle, Collections Assistant

Masonic Button

Q. What is the most rewarding part of your job?
A. Connecting people to ideas through art and artifacts. And I love technical mastery, things made by hand, precisely and exquisitely.

– Dawn Owen, Curator

Posted by Dawn Owen on September 27, 2017

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