The Natural Collection// Exhibition

201MC Professional Experience

So the Natural Collection is been given an exhibition space at Lancaster Library and I’m so excited to get started!

The brief:

-Show a selection of the Photobooks

-The selection can be up to you (would be nice if there was a theme)

-It’s going to be exhibited in the cabinet display on the third floor

-You can use the TV to have a video of the Photobooks or something like that

-Books can be rotated if they are being sent or coming back from a country

-Get in contact with Suzanne White to get the details of what needs to be done, what spaces and equipment we can use and when we can put it up/ take it down

 

I’ve decided that we should meet up with two other people and get started; maybe we could meet every Tuesday morning to discuss plans. Here’s a quick checklist of what we did and when.

 

09/02/2016 (group meeting)

-Decided that we will be meeting on Tuesdays for an hour or two

-Possible date for the exhibition to be up is the March the 14th

-Could do something extract like a fanzine but it depends how much time we have as our exhibitions are running at the same time

-Making sure all the group memebers know what the Natural Collection project is all about and what it aims to do

-Looking at the previous exhibition to see what we liked/ didn’t think worked

 

16/02/16

-There are still some books in Morocco

-We need to start to go through the books and see what there is/ what theme we want to take on with this exhibition

-The exhibition needs to be up before the date mentioned last week, maybe before the Easter holidays

 

23/02/16

-Exhibition will be put up on the 10th of March

-The idea of something extra as well as the exhibition might be a bit too ambitious, we need to keep on top of our time management and we have a lot of deadlines about to come up, so we need to understand what’s important and what’s not necessary

 

30/02/16

Beth and me have been together and working on selecting the books for the exhibition. We spent a great deal of time looking through each book and having an open mind in order to create a range of works for one topic. We devised three piles, definitely, maybe and a no pile. Then we looked through each other’s piles to make sure we had got the right books.

It was really inspiring to see how much a collection can grow and what it can become. We had work from all across the world, books with a high price to them and a real range of artists. Its something I’d love to take on one day. We also came up with the theme; we wanted to use books that were interesting to anti- landscape lovers! So we decided to only pick books that have a specific and unique quality to them, this could be anything from a tracing paper page, to illustration to textures. We thought this would be better and would entice more people to look at it rather then if we did a random selection or a “best of” exhibiting. We made sure that everything was ready for the exhibition and contacted Suzanne to confirm the date.

 

10/03/16

We set up the exhibition today, it was exciting but it was a completely different experience. Mainly because this was someone else’s work and because it was all books. We started by arranging the books how we thought they would look the best. We met with Suzanne who was able to give us more bookstands in different forms so we could have the books open or closed for example.

It wasn’t actually too hard because we picked the books for a reason therefore we knew the best ones to have open and the best ones to show there cover. I decided to keep it quite simplistic, especially because of the space we have. I didn’t want to over crowded it because I think it would deter people from viewing it. We spent a couple of hours rearranging the books back and forth to get the right ones in the right places until we we’re both happy.

The other two members haven’t been particularly involved due to other commitments but I asked them if they could make a video of flicking through some of the Photobooks, similar to how the previous exhibition was set up. However, today they have said they haven’t gone the time. This is a real shame and its something that would have really worked with our exhibition, so in the future I think I’d work solely either by myself or with just one other person. Therefore we can get exactly what we want too done and there isn’t any reliance on people who aren’t too fussed whether they want to contribute or not.

We also taken to Suzanne about getting some of the special books out in the basement, however she explain she’d need some time to this because she’d have to update the library catalogue. Its disappointing but it also means our exhibition is solely focusing on the books in the collection. And now I know this is the future.

 

11/03/16

We decided that the exhibition needed some final details, so we ended up doing those today. First I decided to use a number system like museums have where there is a number alongside a book and then there is one final list showing all the books with the numbers in more detail. So me and Beth did this and then cut them all out and placed them next to the appropriate book. We then decided to have a little poster explaining what the Natural Collection is and what the exhibition is. We both spent time doing this and making sure it was worded correctly and the way we wanted it. We also checked the positioning and how the books were arranged to see if everything was perfect.

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27/04/16

Today we had to take down the exhibition. Its sad but I’ve really enjoyed this experience, and I’ve loved working with work that isn’t mine. It’s made me confident enough to look at curation as a possible career path now. We made sure all the books are carefully handled and back in the envelopes and bubble wrap that they came in. We also got some great feedback and apparently people have been interested and have looked into the exhibition, which is always nice to here!

Overall, I’m happy and I’ve really enjoyed having the responsibility of looking after this collection. Its something that I now know I want to take on in the future. It has also made me think about maybe starting my own collection; maybe a portrait focused one, something that I am passionate about. I’d love to give it ago! It’s given me a great insight into what a passion can become and I’ve developed a huge passion for books. I love books and I love writing.

Come view our exhibition, Lancaster Library 15th of March till 26th of April 2016, the library is open all day everyday so make sure you pop along!

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