Offensive Objects: Displaying Work with Problematic Histories
Every visitor has a unique perspective and that means each visitor’s experience with an object will be unique. Not everyone will (or can) have a purely aesthetic or formal experience with an object. Objects with problematic histories need special attention. For the sake of this workshop, we’ll be defining “offensive” as objects that depict racism, sexism, homophobia, xenophobia, colonialism, or imperialism. Hear from museum professionals from Mystic Seaport, as well as Jan Crocker, Exhibits Manager at Heritage Museums & Gardens, and Margaret Middleton, independent exhibit designer. Discuss what makes an object offensive, learn about strategies for addressing problematic objects, and participate in a reimagining of the display and interpretation of real objects from the Mystic Seaport collection.
Location: Mystic Seaport: The Museum of America and the Sea (Mystic, CT)
Facilitators: Jan Crocker, Exhibit Manager, Heritage Museums & Gardens, MA; Margaret Middleton, Independent Designer, RI