How is Jewelry Selected for a Museum Collection?

Have you ever wondered "How is Jewelry Selected for a Museum Collection?"

This question has always intrigued me. I am always looking for answers. When I noticed that my bracelet was posted as the Crafthaus Mastead Image, the question surfaced again. That is because the bracelet is in the Permanent Collection of the Crocker Art Museum in Sacramento, CA.

The question was also on my mind because Brigitte Martin and I organized the 2014 Professional Development Seminar at the recent SNAG Conference titled, "Collectors, Collections and You".

During this program, Ulysses Grant Dietz, Curator at the Newark Museum confirmed many of my speculations.

To be brief here are a couple of criteria a curator may apply when selecting jewelry for a museum's permanent collection.


Curators and museums are looking for jewelry that looks good on display in a museum.


Size does matter.
 Ulysses Dietz specifically mentioned that ring and cuff links (as an example) are small thus, difficult to show effectively.

In comparison, this bracelet is large enough to fill an entire pedestal case. Below is a shot of the bracelet at the Crocker Art Museum.

  

Another factor for selecting jewelry for a museum collection is the "conversation" in the jewelry.  The museum is thinking about how they can engage the museum viewer. How does a piece of jewelry fit the museum collection? or a theme for an exhibition.

The title of this bracelet  "California Gold Uniformity of Granulation" is a great fit for the Crocker Art Museum.

Crocker
(of the Crocker Art Museum)  was  legal counsel for the Central Pacific Railroad Company, and brother of Charles Crocker, one of the "Big Four" railroad barons. We are talking about historic connections to the California gold rush, California silver mines and the first huge fortunes of California. So the connection to California and gold is a perfect fit.



Uniformity of Granulation
was just a pun on gold granulation, and spoof on the obsessive nature of gold granulation.

A little ironic since gold is the traditional material of jewelry but my bracelet is made from recycled tin cans. 


The edge and reverse side are brass escutcheon pin as dots, pseudo gold granulation dots, and Champagne bubbles.


2006 is year this bracelet was made.

Ulysses Grant Dietz gave a articulate and informative insight into the curator and museum responsibilities for accepting jewelry into the museum collection.

It still hope that we can share this recording and his presentation in the future. Stay tuned for updates.

Harriete Estel Berman

Views: 243

Comment

You need to be a member of crafthaus to add comments!

Join crafthaus

Latest Activity

Rebecca Skeels commented on Rebecca Skeels's group The Association for Contemporary Jewellery
"There were great discussions about tool-making and lots of practical tips at our 20:20 Visions conference earlier this month, thanks to Tim Blades' workshop session."
57 minutes ago
Lorena Angulo joined Patsy Kay Kolesar's group
Thumbnail

Images of Creative Communion

My journey from Vancouver, BC. Canada, to the “Imagery in Jewelry” workshop at Touchstone Center for Craft in Farmington, Pennsylvania. See More
5 hours ago
Harriete E Berman commented on Brigitte Martin's blog post Cecil Kemperink, NL: Ceramic Chain Mail
"I think that all her work is very beautiful and interesting....I wonder if she is very frustrated when poor handling breaks a link.  Or how she deals with the frustration that the work is beyond my people's expectations for jewelry.…"
5 hours ago
Harriete E Berman commented on Brigitte Martin's blog post Cecil Kemperink, NL: Ceramic Chain Mail
"Very interesting.  Show what happens when an artist keeps working, and working, and working. "
6 hours ago
Lorena Angulo joined Brigitte Martin's group
6 hours ago
The Justified Sinner commented on Brigitte Martin's blog post Cecil Kemperink, NL: Ceramic Chain Mail
"AMAZING!  Quite brilliant idea and beautifully executed."
7 hours ago
The Justified Sinner liked Brigitte Martin's blog post Cecil Kemperink, NL: Ceramic Chain Mail
7 hours ago
Brigitte Martin posted a blog post

Cecil Kemperink, NL: Ceramic Chain Mail

At first I thought this must be 3D printed, but it is not. It's fabricated, link by link.So in love with this cross-over application. Ceramics x Fiber and also x Jewelry. Visual artist Cecil Kemperink creates ceramic sculptures. …See More
8 hours ago

Videos

  • Add Videos
  • View All

Masthead Credits

Nisa Blackmon

"Symbihome", 2017

Copper, vitreous enamel, luster.

6.5"l x 4.5"w x 1.25"h.

© 2017   Created by Brigitte Martin.   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service