Guest Post! Joyee Roy on “Exhibition Planning and Management”

‘Exhibition Planning & Management in Museums’ is apparently a very simple subject but museum professionals may agree that it has diverse dimensions. It may be based on a permanent collection or on loaned objects, it could be theme based or artist based, with a combination of different medium objects or with objects in similar categories. But most important when organizing an exhibition is for visitors and communities to connect with it. Proper marketing is one of the most essential parts and it can do wonders for putting together a successful exhibition. Further, another dimension of a successful exhibition is vibrant educational activities related with it.

Essential steps of exhibition planning and management are:-

º Theme progression
º Concept behind the theme chosen
º Checklist creation  DSC08974 - Copy
º Approval by the Director
º Timeline creation
º Conservation
º Digitization
º Design & Construction
º Installation
º Graphics
º PR/ Marketing
º Education & Publication
º Security
º Inauguration

In Indian museums it is a regular activity to organize temporary exhibitions one after another. But we are doing it in hurry without following proper planning. Therefore, after acquiring and experiencing knowledge on ‘Collection Management’ and ‘Exhibition Planning & Management’ at British Museum during ITP 2011 and at the Art Institute of Chicago in 2014 as a Vivekananda Memorial Museum Excellence fellow, I requested Directors of different museums of India to allow me to share my knowledge. As a result, I delivered lectures on  ‘Exhibition Planning & Management’ in Museums’ during 2013 to till date at :-

Patna Museum, Bihar, India;7

Gurusaday Museum, Kolkata, India;

Indian Museum, Kolkata, India;

Rabindra Bharati University Museum, Kolkata, India;

Jiagunj Archaeology Museum, Murshidabad, West Bengal, India;

State Archaeological Museum, Kolkata, India;

Ashutosh Museum under Calcutta University, Kolkata, India;

Tamluk Archaeological Museum, West Bengal, India;

Allahabad Museum, Allahabad, India and

Of course, I spoke 2 times in Victoria Memorial Hall, Kolkata, India (my mother institution).

I received immense appreciation and it is my great pleasure that nowadays all the above museums of India are thinking of new ways to properly plan and organize meaningful and successful exhibitions.