Thursday, 1 December 2016

Cafe Night: November 2016

We met at Williams in Burilngton by Silvercity on Nov 28, 2016, to hear a great presentation from Lambton Heritage Museum's Luke Stempien about that museum's recent RE:ORG project and discuss education/handling collections.
Thanks for sharing, Luke!


  • Started through ICOM and UNESCO
  • around since 2006, came to Canada in 2014/15
  • First piloted in Ontario 
  • Step-by-step tool kit for reorganizing space, easily scalable
  • There should be a space for everything (including educational materials and collections)
  • 2011 ICOM surveyed museums, 1/3 lack regular storage cleaning schedule
  • Have storage space staff person to oversee
  • Safe space for storage
  • Collection space/ operational/education/curatorial
  • Took a whole year to do the reorg
  • Project team; all full time and part time staff, regular meetings, (core team of 3 people, bigger team of 6)
  • Can help show where collection strengths and weaknesses are
  • Myths: you don't need to have a full collections inventory to start the process, you might have more space than you think
  • How long to find something in storage?: should take 3 mins
  • Started out taking about 20 mins to find something

How to get started?
Click this PDF link for RE:ORG's Self Evaulation Tool

  • Get senior management involved; RE:ORG is good because it gives numbers that can be used across a number of museums and internationally
  • Get in touch with other museums and galleries
  • Collecting moratorium?
  • Changes to method of collecting? / Have to tackle policy documents?
  • Volunteer collections committee (buffer between staff and public)?
  • Make sure there's enough staff (right ratio between collections and education)

Suggestions for moving forward with RE:ORG

  • Look at policy documents, tie collecting into interpretation
  • Offsite storage for non-essential things
  • Interpretive costumes: could go on compression storage
  • Education materials storage: a particular place for things like Tool kit bookings and a system to keep track of all items (Separate systems?)
  • Deasscensioning: can go to committee

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