As one of my classes for spring of 2018, I participated in Exhibition Processes. During this class, my classmates and I worked in Dalton Gallery to learn about designing and installing exhibitions. We worked all but one of the shows for the spring semester, hanging art and cleaning the Dalton Gallery. Most importantly, as our midterm project, we designed and installed the annual Showing/Thinking exhibition. My group of four worked together to design and install an exhibition based on the research of Dr. Yvonne Newsome, one of Agnes Scott College’s Professors of Sociology. We focused on how growing up during the Civil Rights Era led to Dr. Newsome’s focus on intersectionality and inequality in the media. We also created several of the pieces of art in the exhibit, such as a quilt of the southeast United States which was embroidered with information on major Civil Rights events in the South. In the exhibit, we juxtaposed the quilt with one of Dr. Newsome’s lectures on the representation of African Americans in the media, portraits of Dr. Newsome’s inspirations, quotes from famous sociologist Audre Lorde and poet Maya Angelou, and a wardrobe with an “I AM A MAN” poster in it (Dr. Newsome’s clearest memory of the Civil Rights Movement was seeing her father put his poster in their wardrobe).
Not only did this class provide useful training in exhibition design and installation, it also helped me settle on my decision to go into Museum curation as a career. I am now able to focus in on museum work in my studies of Anthropology/Sociology and Art History. I believe that the experiences in my class helped me figure out where I need to focus in my exhibition design and museum training. I also think that my experience in the class was one of the reasons I received the opportunity to work at the Museum of Contemporary Art this summer. Going forward, I hope to use what I learned in this class as I pursue more internships in museums.