The First Art Newspaper on the Net    Established in 1996 Wednesday, September 29, 2021


Face masks and slippers: Museums preserve lockdown life
This file combination of photographs created in London on March 27, 2020 shows disposable plastic gloves discarded in the street in Manchester (top L), Manchester (top C), Marsden (top R), London (bottom L), London (bottom C) and Marsden (bottom R). The global coronavirus pandemic is still raging but museums are already gathering testimony and objects to remember life under lockdown. Oli SCARFF, Daniel LEAL-OLIVAS / AFP.

by Pauline Froissart



LONDON (AFP).- Would you put your slippers on display? The global coronavirus pandemic is still raging but museums are already gathering testimony and objects to remember life under lockdown.

"It's such an extraordinary experience," Beatrice Behlen, senior curator at the Museum of London, told AFP.

"When we knew there was going to be a lockdown, we started straight away talking about what we needed to collect something for the future."

The museum, dedicated to the history of the British capital, launched an appeal for Londoners to donate items that reflect their lives during the COVID-19 outbreak.

"It could be something that gives you comfort -- one example mentioned often is maybe your favourite slippers, and you've been wearing them every day," she said.

It might also be evidence of a new skill someone has picked up, whether knitting or cooking or making masks for healthcare workers.

Among the items collected so far are a pot of homemade jam and a makeshift rattle used to accompany the weekly "clap for carers" across the country.

"What is interesting for us is the story that's behind it, not necessarily the thing itself," Behlen said.

"It needs to mean something to the people. And we asked them to tell us about the object as well."

'Collection of emotions'
Harder to curate are the emotions people feel while isolated at home, the feelings of loss and fear, but also safety, hope and love.

In response to an appeal by the Museum of Home, also in London, one family has recorded how they set up a screen in front of their table so they could share a meal with relatives via videolink.

Another transformed their living room into a workshop to make gowns for healthcare staff.

The museum is also asking people to record how they feel about their homes, which are now used as offices, classrooms and gyms.

"What seems to be coming out time and again with some of the testimonies is people's resilience to the situation and how they're changing and adapting," said museum director Sonia Solicari.

In one recollection, a man known only as Amarjit describes how his Victorian house in east London has become "a palace" during lockdown, as "everything now happens here".

By contrast Alex, who lives alone in a small flat with no outside space, says he feels like he is in "solitary confinement in prison."

"However, I am grateful that I am safe and not in a difficult relationship -- the neighbours downstairs constantly fight."

Solicari says she has been surprised at how open people have been.

"It's really become a collection of feelings and emotions, as well as a collection of images and testimonies," she told AFP.

"So it documents feelings, which can be very hard for museums to collect actually."

Insta-museum
Curators around the world are making similar efforts to chronicle these historic times.

In Sweden, the Nordiska museet in Stockholm is currently collecting children's reflections of how their daily lives have changed and how they see the future.

In Vienna, a photo of a birthday in confinement and a kiss through a window pane are part of 1,800 contributions already collected by the city's museum.

"You have to keep a record of this event to explain in 100 years time what happened," said Sarah Lessire, who is coordinating an online archive project in Belgium.

"If we don't act now, we risk losing all these memories," she told AFP.

Her site lists multiple initiatives such as mutual aid groups on Facebook or a virtual May Day party.

The lockdown has also inspired three young advertising executives in Barcelona to set up a virtual museum on Instagram.

More than 900 pieces of work have already been submitted to the Covid Art Museum from around the world.

For bricks-and-mortar institutions whose doors have closed during the lockdown, however, there is a worry that they may not be able to show their collections to real life visitors for months.

Some fear they may not survive at all, including the Florence Nightingale Museum London, which is calling urgently for donations.

Dedicated to the pioneering nurse, the museum is situated in the grounds of St Thomas' Hospital, where Prime Minister Boris Johnson was recently treated for coronavirus.


© Agence France-Presse










Today's News

May 12, 2020

Claremont Rug Company's Jan David Winitz Continues His Examination of Great Antique Caucasian Rugs

Christie's announces the 7 online auctions comprising Classic Week

Kurt Cobain's "MTV Unplugged" guitar to headline Julien's Auctions Music Icons June 19-20

Works by women artists and Washington Color School highlight Doyle's May 20 auction of Important Paintings

Christie's offers European and English furniture, silver, ceramics, gold boxes and works of art

Apollo 17-Flown Silver Robbins Medallion once owned by last moonwalker could bring $50K in Heritage Space Exploration

Bonhams launches Australia Jewels 'Behind Closed Doors' auction

Artcurial auction will showcase the biggest names in the 9th art from the classic and modern eras

Gladstone Gallery Brussels reopens its doors to the public starting on Tuesday, May 12

Reflex Amsterdam opens an exhibition of works by British artist Helen Beard

Jerry Stiller, comedian with enduring appeal, is dead at 92

Exhibition at Die Photographische Sammlung presents the work of Berenice Abbott

Dazzling array of 19th- and early 20th-century paintings offered in Heritage Fine European Art auction

Michaan's May auction delivers glamorous art, estate jewels and rare books of the Old West

Housatonic Museum of Art receives gift of more than 600 photographs ranging from iconic to everyday

Daylight Books publishes 'The Salton Sea' by Debbie Bentley

Museum Tinguely reopens with "Amuse-bouche. The Taste of Art" exhibition

The 32nd Edition of La Biennale Paris will be postponed to September 2021

Face masks and slippers: Museums preserve lockdown life

The Gwangju Biennale Foundation announces the postponement of the 13th Gwangju Biennale to 2021

A drive-by art show turns lawns and garages into galleries

Safety screening: Czech cinemas open with new virus rules in place

Coronavirus interrupts world's longest-running cartoon

MassArt, City of Boston receive $1.2 million to support artists of color

Things Needed to Start a 3D Printing Business

What does the Bible say about Earth's age

Could Cinema and Theatre Be At Risk?

How To Develop A Financial Plan During Coronavirus




Museums, Exhibits, Artists, Milestones, Digital Art, Architecture, Photography,
Photographers, Special Photos, Special Reports, Featured Stories, Auctions, Art Fairs,
Anecdotes, Art Quiz, Education, Mythology, 3D Images, Last Week, .

 



Founder:
Ignacio Villarreal
(1941 - 2019)
Editor & Publisher: Jose Villarreal
Art Director: Juan José Sepúlveda Ramírez

Royalville Communications, Inc
produces:

ignaciovillarreal.org avemariasound.org juncodelavega.com facundocabral-elfinal.org
Founder's Site. The most varied versions
of this beautiful prayer.
Hommage
to a Mexican poet.
Hommage
       

The First Art Newspaper on the Net. The Best Versions Of Ave Maria Song Junco de la Vega Site Ignacio Villarreal Site
Tell a Friend
Dear User, please complete the form below in order to recommend the Artdaily newsletter to someone you know.
Please complete all fields marked *.
Sending Mail
Sending Successful