ITP 2021: Museum Project Day

Written by George Peckham, ITP Assistant

Another project which has become a regular feature of the ITP annual programme is Museum Project Day. The aim of Museum Project Day is for the fellows to visit another London-based museum and to use their experiences on the ITP and as a heritage professional to consider its visitor offering.

The fellows are divided into groups to go on a self guided visit of a London museum chosen by the ITP team. Fellows are tasked to focus on all aspects of the museum’s offering to its audiences, considering in light of practices at the British Museum and other museums they may have visited.

We try to link the museums for Museum Project Day with a theme, and ask the fellows to think about how the exhibition or display they visited addresses the given theme. For ITP 2021, the theme chosen for Museum Project Day was social issues. Museums are increasingly using their collections to highlight and reflect upon current issues facing the world. Some of the most prevailing social issues often highlighted in museum displays include, but are not limited to, racism and decolonisation, gender and women’s rights, class, LGBTQ+ issues, war and refugee crises, and social issues caused by climate change.

After their visits to the museums, the groups returned to the British Museum and presented their findings to their colleagues. This year the ITP 2021 visited the following museums and exhibitions:

Tate Modern
Special exhibition: Lubiana Himid

Museum of Brands
Special exhibition: When Brands Take a Stand

Museum of London
Gallery: World City

London Transport Museum
Special exhibition: Legacies: London Transport’s Caribbean Workforce

Natural History Museum
Special exhibition: Our Broken Planet, How we got here and ways to fix it

Tate Britain
Special exhibition: Life Between Islands

ITP at Tate Modern

We hope the fellows enjoyed their museum visit. It was great to come back and hear about each groups’ experiences and thoughts. The teams gave feedback about what they liked about their museum visit, what they might have done differently, and whether they thought the exhibitions achieved their goals.

The project is a great opportunity to visit more museums in London and discover different approaches to exhibitions and display. We’ll look forward to planning the next Museum Project Day for ITP 2022!