“You Like This” Community Curators Hold Final Meeting

The final vote for You Like This, a crowdsourcing exhibition of the Museum’s permanent collection, came to a close last Tuesday, and our community curators met on Wednesday, August 3, and had the opportunity to discuss how that art should be hung in the gallery. The session began with presentations from Museum Director and CEO Colleen Sheehy and Director of Curatorial Affairs and Interpretation Megan Johnston. The two spoke on different creative exhibitions they had worked on and gave examples of how an art gallery doesn’t always need to be a traditional, static environment. They encouraged the community curators to think about intentionality, rhythm, juxtaposition, narratives, and even the use of colored walls to aid in delivering their message.

Megan Johnston describes her curating experiences with the group.

The next thing to decide was, “what exactly is our message?” We had originally planned to have three community curating sessions with the last one designated to the curatorial elements of the exhibition, but we had so many ideas it was difficult to focus them into a theme. Some curators wanted to take a step further and be more hands-on with the details of the installation, a request that Museum staff was happy to oblige. After that was settled, the curators had more time to brainstorm broad ideas.

Community Curators and Museum staff brainstorm ideas for displaying the exhibition.

One of our curators thought it would be best to go around the table so everyone could voice one idea they thought should be involved in the display. Here are a few examples the group generated:

o       Highlight the crowdsourcing element and clue people into the process

o       Have some walls white, and others a solid color

o       Delineation; something unexpected like displaying works at different angles and on different surfaces

o       Incorporate the community’s comments from the online survey into the exhibition

o       Allow visitors to continue to vote (interactive)

o       QR codes – sent to a discussion board and forum

o       Different groupings of art using room dividers – “traditional” and moving to a funkier, more experimental area

o       Using vinyl, stats and percentages in the display

Museum staff and some of the community curators will now use this information to organize and install the exhibition. Be sure to check out the exhibition October 6, 2011 – January 15, 2012 in Jane L. Stern Gallery and see what the Fargo-Moorhead community has generated through this crowdsourcing process.

Have you been following the You Like This process? Please leave your reactions and comments below.