What Are Museums For?

Let us start the year with an important question: What are museums for?

Field of Work

1048Looking through my notes for 2013 I stumbled across this blog post that I was working on back when I first saw this installation by Luis Camnitzer hanging outside the Belkin Gallery at UBC.  Enjoy!

Museums are not just places to store and exhibit works or art, or historical interest, they are where societies, groups and even individuals make and recreate themselves.

Museums are diverse because their stories and visitors are also diverse and ever-everchanging.
Even a single individual will experience the same exhibit differently, should he or she visit multiple times.  
The old adage you can’t step into the same river twice certainly applies to museums.  Author J.D. Salinger expressed this idea quite admirably (although in language that is a bit outmoded by today’s standards):

“The best thing, though, in that museum was that everything always stayed right where it was…. The only thing that would be different would be you…

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