Panel Discussion: Materials in the Museum (5pm-5.55pm)
Museums often group objects into material categories (metalwork, silver, glass, ceramics) as well as others that reflect how artists have used them (painting, sculpture) or alternatively by period or region. What has been gained by separating out different materials and what gets overlooked? This panel discussion will explore how materials have been understood and displayed in museums, including: historical and recent methods of display; exhibitions dedicated to specific materials; how best to display the properties of materials, whether real or imagined, and to explain/interpret the skill that artists have brought to them; how far handling materials can be part of the museum experience; how far new technologies can help with better public understanding of materials.
Chair: Thomas Marks, Editor of Apollo
Christopher Maxwell, Curator of Early Modern Glass at the Corning Museum of Glass
Caroline McCaffrey-Howarth, 17th and 18th Century Curator of Ceramics & Glass at the Victoria and Albert Museum, London
Dora Thornton, Curator of Antique and Contemporary Silver, Modern Jewellery, and Art Medals at the Goldsmiths' Company, London
Charlotte Vignon, Director of the Musée national de céramique, Sèvres
Break-out Session: Collaborative Materials (5.55–6.25pm)
All symposium participants will be split into small discussion groups. In this session, they will be invited to discuss how museums, academics and the art market can work together to build a better understanding of materials, and how such knowledge can be communicated to a wide public. What practical steps would further public engagement with the materials of art?