Dr. Malgorzata J. Rymsza-Pawlowska teaches a two-semester course in the Historical Administration graduate program entitled History Museum Exhibits. Over the course of the academic year, students learn about the history, theory, and best practices of exhibition work. They then apply this knowledge to their own history exhibit. This year, the class has been working with the Tarble Arts Center on an exhibition showcasing the Tarble’s Buzzard Textiles Collection—handicrafts collected and made by Irene and Guy Buzzard, Eastern’s third President and his wife. The Buzzard collection was donated to Eastern over thirty years ago, but has never before been exhibited.
During the first semester, ten H.A. students worked in three committees: Audience/Design, Curatorial, and Artifact. The class spent the semester surveying the exhibit’s potential audience, identifying key exhibit themes, selecting objects from the Tarble’s collection, and doing research on the lives of the Buzzards. At Eastern’s Booth Archives, they found a wonderful scrapbook made by Dr. Buzzard, detailing their lives together. The scrapbook and the handicrafts will be at the center of the exhibition, which will be on view in the Tarble’s E-Gallery from April 12th to June 29th.
For the Spring semester, students are working in thee new committees: Exhibit, Publicity/Marketing, and Education. They will finalize design plans, fabricate exhibition elements and props, develop marketing and programming, and install the exhibition. They are currently planning a digital database of artifacts, an exhibit blog and website, posters and brochures, and several interactive elements including an audiotour and a weaving activity. Stay tuned to this space for more links and information!