@MarDixon Passionate about culture internationally. Run remixing events, workshops, create solutions, and an international speaker. Over sharer and Mom who loses arguments to a teen. Projects created: @CultureThemes @lovetheatreday @AskaCurator @MuseumSelfieDay @TeensInMuseums @52museums
  • #AskACurator 2018: Positive, Fun, Serious, Friendly, Uplifting, Controversial & More!

    September 16th, 2018mardixonCulture, International, Personal

    During #AskACurator 2018 I tried to capture some of the different conversations.  This is more for me than for anyone to think this is an overall statement of the day (because I am not the one that can or will ever capture everything!)


    Museums talking to each – Australia and New Zealand really set the tone for 2018 as there weren’t a lot of questions at first so they took the bull by the horns and starting asking questions amongst themselves – then the public got involved and next thing you know it’s trending 2nd in all of Australia.

    First Tweet from @MOTAT_NZ 9:13pm 11-09-2018


    By the time I jumped back Russia and Europe were in full swing (not so much UK at that point) and the tone remain positive, light, inquisitive, fun, interesting and most importantly educational.


    I usually try to ask a few general questions to get things going.  This year they were mostly ignored which to me is AMAZING because that meant there were so many other questions being asked mine weren’t needed!


    What do you Wear?

    Museums talking to Each other – even about Spaceships… as you do 

    Educational questions also!

    Political Unrest And/or Safeguarding Collections

    I was also in contact with Yemen about being involved this year to talk about museums that have to deal with unrest and conflict around them and safeguarding their collections:

    Which also brought up many questions around what people are doing in regards to the Brazil fire:

    LGBT Question


    General Questions 

    Adrian Murphy actually asked three questions, one about Pink objects, one about Blue objects and one about migration


    Other General and Fun Questions:

    Advice for future self


    Describe job in emojis

    Reading list

    What Gif best describes your experience in museums?

    New Museums found via #AskACurator

    Social media changed curation?

    2pm list of general questions

    Musical instrument


    What do curators do to unwind






    And with USA and other Countries getting Online, more museums started talking to each other:


    Helping the Homesick Swede was a Thing

    Silly, Weird and Wonderful 

    Licking items

    Objects coming alive at night?

    AskACurator is for everyone and it was lovely to see that schools got involved again.  This year a Kindergarten class really got involved:


    There were several Moments on Twitter (I can’t embed as it grabs whole story)

    Museum curators reveal what items they’ve used to impress their dates #AskACurator @nightlightguy asked if curators ever bring museum items on a date as a way to break the ice with a potential match. It happens more than you may have guessed.  https://twitter.com/i/events/1039896117595398144

    Thanks for sharing and taking part in #AskACurator day @philamuseum

    ⚡️ “#AskACurator Day” by @philamuseum https://twitter.com/i/moments/1039981163832586240

    And there were plenty of stories on Instagram (example) :


    And AMA (Ask Me Anything) on Reddit (hoping English Heritage Blog) 

    Today is Ask A Curator Day. We’re English Heritage and we look after Stonehenge. Ask our historian Susan Greaney and curator Heather Sebire anything about the site! from IAmA

    Edit to add tweet from their stats:


    And also plenty of Facebook Lives being used



    Being more Inclusive

    And finally, it wouldn’t be a hashtag day without some controversy which for the most part I ignored but did feel the need to at least address the issue of using the word curator and not museum worker or other general terms. I tried to explain as it does tend to come up every year (by museum workers, not the public …)


    I did love this:


    The staff of a museum is a bit like a Swiss army knife or a bunch of keys. It brings together many experienced professionals to find solutions and launch new projects. Thank you for participating in

    #askacurator 2018 and continue to come and meet us!


    I was away and missed the part where it sort of snowballed after the event again so the best way I could respond I felt was with a thread:


    Ending with a short video of the Instagram #AskACurator tag for a minute but it seems there were over 20,000 people using the tag!


    Right now the date is set for September 18 2019 but follow @AskACurator on Twitter and Instagram for any updates! 




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