Tuesday, 23 August 2011

Behind the Scenes at the Museum

Interview with Zoë Brealey, Assistant Curator
Zoë has been responsible for making sure MoDA’s collections are moved to our new location, and that we don’t lose anything on the way. Here we ask Zoë about her job:

Q: How long has it taken you to prepare for this move?

A: We’ve been planning for this move for over a year. Getting ready to move the collections was a bit like an enormous 3D puzzle. The museum holds lots of objects of various sizes, ranging from small pamphlets, books and journals; to thousands and thousands of flat objects such as designs and wallpapers; and over two hundred large textiles on rolls. Part of the process has involved ensuring that everything is boxed appropriately so that it will not be damaged during the move, and also that things will be accessible to students and researchers in the long run.

At the same time, the shelving in the new location will not be the same configuration as our current shelving. I measured everything several times to ensure that it would all fit into the new store. Some objects had to be re-boxed and moved around within the store to make sure the collections fit into the newly configured space, and to ensure the best possible use of space.

I also had to label everything and make sure things were in the right places before the move, so that the removal men can put them in the correct locations at the other end!

Q: It sounds like a massive task - have you enjoyed it?
A: It has been great experience, and although it has sometimes been exhausting it's also been very satisfying to see our plans coming together.  It will be good to see all the boxes in their new locations soon, and for students and members of the public to be able to use them again.