Posted on July 19th, 2013 by Rachel
A blog post by Education Intern Trillion Attwood. To read more posts by Trillion and other JMM interns, click here.
One of the really fun things about being an intern is the field trips that we take. Before the internship started we were asked to select from a list the places we would most like to visit, as soon as I saw The Holocaust Memorial Museum’s stores, I knew this would be the one I would look forward to most. We finally got our chance yesterday.
There is a statistic that museums only show ten percent of there collection, ninety percent of the time, so I knew that this would be an opportunity to see some amazing objects that I would never see otherwise. As I expected it was a very unassuming building, you would drive past without a second glance, inside though it opened up to be something like the most organized Aladdin’s cave I have ever seen.
Heather Kajic, the Chief of Collections Management, took the time to show us around and see some of the highlights, but also some of the ways that they have tackled some of the common issues faced by museums. For example, the collection was arranged in such a way that it was possible to remove any object from it’s storage location easily and without ever physically touching the object, meaning the collection is protected but accessible.
For me one of the most memorable moments was seeing a collection of paintings that were created in a labor camp, but cannot be put on display due to copyright issues. This can be a common issue in museums, so it was a privilege to have a chance to see them up close. We also saw a selection of clothes worn in concentration camps. One particular pair of pants still had the stains acquired though hard physical labor, which for me made them even more emotive.
On the same day we also had a chance to visit Bonsai Fine Arts, where the one of the owners Scott Pittman and his colleague John Eaton, took the time to show us around. Here we had a chance to learn about some of the practical elements regarding moving artworks. This was a fascinating experience, as an intern this is not something that had come up previously, and was never been mentioned throughout my education.
Me with one of Bonsai’s crates, with a bonsai tree design.
As we walked around we could see the care that goes into creating these creates, they were some of the most beautiful creates I have ever seen, not something I thought I would ever hear myself saying. One of the fun things that we learnt was that certain art galleries have all their creates painted a certain color for easy recognition, for example we saw the specific shades that The Whitney and The National Gallery use.
Bonsai’s exceptionally clean workshop.
Learning from Scott about creating the inside of a crate.
Overall it was another fantastic experience and I know I learnt lots, I really appreciate the time that people took out of their days to enable this opportunity. I am already looking forward to the next trip and getting to use some of what I learnt.
Bonsai’s pretty crates.
Posted on June 18th, 2013 by Rachel
A blog post by Education Intern Trillion Attwood.
Last Sunday we celebrated in style with Clark Kent at his Bar Mitzvah, held here at the museum. This was inspired by one of our current exhibitions Zap! Pow! Bam! that examines the role of Jewish artists in the development of comic book heroes. This exhibition is only here until August 18th, if you have not had a chance to visit yet I highly recommend trying to find some time. There are lots of interesting images and objects, including the first drawings of Superman and the desk on which they were drawn.
The day was pretty action packed with lots of things to do no matter your age, plenty of people found time to create there own superhero, or villain mask. There was also t-shirt decorating for everyone, lots of people went for the classic superman logo, some people had seriously impressive creative skills. Which combined with a selection of capes, led to plenty of dressing up and superhero posing for photos.
My superhero mask
I really enjoyed our tastiest make of the day, edible torah scrolls, made with fruit roll ups, pretzels and candy, easily done at home. These combined with our kryptonite punch and huge cake made for a bit of a sugar-high, but what sort of a party is complete without sugar? I should also mention, there were plenty of healthier snacks.
One very popular part of the day was the viewing of the original Superman serials from the 1950’s. We always have them showing, but in the spirit of the day, they really drew a crowd. There was one boy, who had seen part of them on a school visit recently, and had been left on such a cliffhanger, he asked his father to bring him back so he could see the rest.
We also had a couple of really interesting talks during the day, by our museum director Marvin Pinkert and the days MC Josh Fruhlinger. Lots of people also found the time to go on our synagogue tours and look around our Voices of Lombard street exhibition.
The highlight of the day was the candle lighting ceremony, in which Superman asked for help from all the most important people in his life. This included a short poem for each person, including this one for Siegel and Shuster the creators of Superman:
You created superman from your imagination,
And your drawings and stories swept the whole nation.
A huge success on comics, TV and the silver screen,
In memory of Siegel and Shuster, I’ll light candle thirteen.
Superman lighting his candles
There was of course also dancing, in which almost everyone participated, due to plenty of friendly encouragement. It seemed that everyone had a really good day, especially the dads, which is the most important thing.
If you did miss out there are still plenty more events this summer around Zap! Pow! Bam! including our Super Art Fight June 30th. Watch the website or facebook for more details.
Thank you to Elaine Hall for photographs.