11 January 2016

Job Vacancy: Project Manager for Oxford University Museums store move

Project Manager
Oxford University Museums, Parks Road, Oxford
Grade 7: £30,738 - £37,768 p.a.
An experienced Project Manager is required to take overall responsibility for coordinating the preparation and movement of reserve museum collections from their current location into two other locations, and for working with University Estates to deliver a suitable storage facility.

The Project Manager (PM) will work with staff of the four University Museums to plan and deliver the removal of a range of museum collections from the Old Power Station (OPS), within budget and within a defined timescale. The largest collections in the OPS are cared for by the Pitt Rivers Museum and the Museum of the History of Science but some material cared for by the Ashmolean and the OU Museum of Natural History is also held there. Each collection has distinct requirements and the PM will need to work with museum staff (who will prepare and pack artefacts) to be sensitive to the needs of the collections for movement and re-storage and, if necessary, to manage expectations as to what the project can deliver.
This is a complex project requiring the PM to liaise closely with museum staff to facilitate and support the preparation of artefacts for the move, planning logistics required for the process, and also to represent museum requirements to University Estate Services. The PM will be first point of contact for the Museums for Estates Services which includes Security, Repairs and Maintenance, minor and capital works. He/she will be responsible for ensuring that a properly scoped and budgeted plan is prepared and delivered. The PM will also be responsible for health and safety and security for all the spaces involved in the project.
This post is fixed-term until 31 December 2017.

For further please contact the interim Director of the Pitt Rivers Museum, Professor Laura Peers using the details below.
Only applications received before 12.00 midday on 26 January 2016 can be considered. You will be required to upload a full CV and supporting statement as part of your online application. Interviews are planned for Tuesday 16 February 2016.

Call for Papers: Ethnographic Imaginings - Place, Space & Time

Contemporary Ethnography Across the Disciplines 2016
15 - 18 November
University of Cape Town
South Africa
Conference Theme: Ethnographic Imaginings - Place, Space & Time 
CFP now open
To register, visit www.cead.org.nz
With the 2016 theme—Ethnographic Imaginings: Place, Space, and Time—calls for contributors to explore ethnographies as located contextually within meaningful sites and temporal moments. The spaces, places and times we can imagine include explorations of rurality and urbanity, wild and tamed, critical and creative, sensual and cognitive, and contemporary and historical—and all ranges of creative impulse. All manner of ethnographies are welcomed, and the conference theme merely acts as a guide for possibilities. We invite contributors to experiment with traditional ethnography, as well as new methodologies and with new presentational formats such as dramatic, performance, poetic, visual, aromatic, tactile, video, auto-, fictional, and experimental forms of ethnography. 

Call for papers: Politics of museological cooperation between Africa and Europe in the 21st century

Thomas Laely, Patrick Emory Effiboley, Birthe Pater
In the current debates both in social anthropology and museum studies, critical analyses of the history and the present role of ethnographic museums can be observed. There are doubts about the current potential of ethnographic museums to overcome their colonial legacy, which was acquired during the time of their establishment and the many decades after. Thus, the majority of the collections do not simply represent material culture of foreign world regions but also bear testimonies of local ideologies, colonial practices and inequalities. The legacy of colonial rule, racism and the emergence of a global capitalism are deeply rooted in the structures and functions of collections. Besides, the former claim to represent “the others” – the people of the peripheries and their cultures stored and exhibited in the centre (Europe or North America), painfully reveals the asymmetric relations between these institutions and the communities of provenance. The claim to present cultures from an objective, encyclopaedic angle by displaying their material culture in a showcase, has basically failed – in today's understanding.

However, within Europe, new questions were fueled by the preparations of setting up the Mus̩e du Quai Branly in Paris, the new MRAC in Tervuren as well as the Humboldt Forum in Berlin, involving African museum experts. The claim to involve African practitioners and scholars as well, goes undisputed in this context Рin order to bring local museums on the continent into the focus of exploration. Although there have been numerous international co-operations between African and European museums, only few of them could live up to the claims of post-colonial critique. Either those co-operations were mainly unidirectional displaying European exhibitions in African museums or aiming at the coaching of African institutions in relevant fields such as conservation, restoration, or curating, and thereby following a development approach. Others were undertaken on a mere consulting level of knowledge exchange with afropolitan museologists in Europe. Only few collaborations focused on the practical implementation of a joint project, based on local expectations, goals and needs of all involved parties.

In the proposed panel, questions shall be raised as: What are the conditions and effects of cooperation between museums in Africa and Europe today? How does North-South museum cooperation effect on the future of the ethnographic museum – in Africa and Europe? How do we collect, interpret and impart material culture in the 21st century? Do shared narratives exist and how are they produced? How does urbanity translate into museum work, exhibitions, audience, perception, and vice-versa?

Whereas the communication on the conference is in French only, for our museum panel we gladly expect proposals for contributions in English as well.
Proposals for individual contributions to a panel have to be submitted online up to 15 January 2015 latest on the site  The final inscription date to attend the conference will be mid March 2016.
Under this link, you find all information needed to submit a paper or just taking part at the conference

Curating Human Remains in the UK MEG seminar

When: Wednesday 20th January 2016 9.30 - 4.30
Where: University of Bristol, Wills Memorial Building, Queens Road, Bristol, BS8 1RL

Held jointly by the Natural Science Collections Association (NatSCA), the Society of Museum Archaeology (SMA) and the Museum Ethnographers Group (MEG) in association with the Human Remains SSN.

The Curating Human Remains in UK Museums workshop held in 2014 highlighted a need within the sector and professional interest in building confidence in curating human remains. In response to this need NatSCA, MEG and SMA are hosting a day of talks and case studies relating to working with human remains,

The aim of the seminar is to address current legislation of the Human Tissue Act in relation to institutions that care for, display, research and store human remains. The seminar will include examples of best practice and recent case studies.

Provisional Programme:

9.30 - 10.00 Coffee and registration

10.00 - 11.00 Case studies of good practice
Carina Phillips (Royal College of Surgeons) - how to approach the documentation/collections management, display and research use for the RCS human remains collections.

11.00 - 12.00 How to handle and store human remains
Heather Bonney (Natural History Museum) tbc

12.00 - 12.30 Lunch, not provided

13.30 - 14.30 Up to date legislation
Myra Geisen (University of Newcastle) - the ethics and legislation in caring for human remains
Caroline Browne (Human Tissue Act)

14.30 - 17.30 Case studies of osteological reviews
Rose Drew - Contextualised Remains: educational display versus public voyeurism: the crew of the Mary Rose
Subhadra Das  - A review of UCL's pathology collections
Lauren Leith (University of Exeter/RAMM) - Skulls in Discovering Worlds: how a designation-funded project has opened up a recent study of Melanesian modified crania at the Royal Albert Memorial Museum, Exeter
Sue Giles and Lisa Graves (Bristol Museum & Art Gallery) - Death and the Human Tissue Act (HTA): presenting their experience of using human remains in a temporary exhibition on death at Bristol Museum and Art Gallery and how they found the process of applying for HTA license and its impact on the museum

Tickets can be purchased until 19.01.2016.
Ticket prices are as follows:
£30 NatSCA/MEG/SMA members (organisation members should use the promotional code 'R3main5' for discount)
£20 students
£45 non members

Please book online 


9 January 2016

Curatorial development opportunities offered by the Art Fund

Navigating the Art Market
The Art Fund is excited to announce a refreshed version of the Navigating the Art Market professional development course for 2016. Developed in partnership with Sotheby’s Institute of Art, the course is designed to promote a practical understanding of the art market through a combination of online learning and seminars in London, with spaces fully-funded by the Art Fund. It is targeted at early career curators with limited experience of engaging with the art market, and more experienced curators wishing to refresh their knowledge.
In 2016 the course will be delivered in two parts, each comprising two online sessions and a seminar day.  The first part will take place from mid-February to early March, and the second from mid-April to early May.
The deadline for applications is 12 noon on Friday 29 January.
To find out more and to apply for a place please visit the website.
Jonathan Ruffer Curatorial Grants Programme
The Art Fund is delighted that philanthropist and patron Jonathan Ruffer has generously increased his support for this programme by 50%, from £50,000 to £75,000 per year. This programme provides funding for travel and other practical costs to help curators from museums large and small undertake collection and exhibition research projects within the UK or anywhere in the world; since its inception in 2012 the scheme has benefitted over 200 curators in 130 institutions. Applications for grants under £1,500 can be accepted at any time, while applications over £1,500 are only considered three times a year. The deadlines for 2016 are as follows:
·         Wednesday 20th January
·         Wednesday 20th May
·         Wednesday 14th September
Full details on the scheme and the application process can be found on the website.

Workshops on Evaluation in Scotland

Workshops run by leading specialists in their fields and focussed on practical evaluation. There are currently four events planned for March, happening in Glasgow and Stirling:
  • On 8th March at the University of Strathclyde: Using Social Media for Evaluation and Feedback: Analysing Quality of Public Engagement Experience Data from TripAdvisor and Twitter with Andrew Moss and Dr. Eric Jensen as our specialist speakers.
  • On 9th March at the University of Strathclyde: Gentle Introduction to Quantitative Public Engagement Evaluation using Questionnaires and Observation with Andrew Moss and Dr. Eric Jensen as our specialist speakers.
  • On 10th March at University of Stirling: The Role of Data and Evaluation in the Cultural and Third Sector with Dr. Vikki McCall, Alasdair Rutherford and Dr. Eric Jensen as our specialist speakers.
  • On 11th March at University of Strathclyde: Introduction to Quantitative Data Analysis for Public Engagement Evaluation with Dr. Eric Jensen as our specialist speaker.
EARLY BIRD DISCOUNT expires on 29th January, so be sure to book soon if you want to make the most of it!
Each event is described in detail here.