Recently, we received a question on Twitter about our processes for insuring the safety of objects as they prepare for shipment. The answer to that is multifacted, but one thing we do is to have expert registrars travel with some of our exhibitions, helping to install or pack up each artifact, panel, and label. Here's a sort of "day in the life" of our registrars Josie and Cheryl as they arrive to crate up Smithsonian traveling exhibitions.
Day 1: Deinstalltion of Women, Art, and Social Change: The Newcomb Pottery Enterprise. Packed the large framed works; put text panels in trays and prepared additional crate. Assistant registrar handled de-installing and condition reporting objects from the two wall jewelry cases. Staff took the lead with doing outgoing condition reports, as we funneled objects to them and tracked the packing.
Day 2: Packed three more crates and most of the mounts. Continued doing condition reports.
Day 3: Finished packing all object and mount crates. Art handlers made a modification to one crate, packing to better accommodate the condition reports and installation books. Double-boxed the object labels for shipment.
Cheryl's experiences with the 48-foot replica of Titanoboa: Monster Snake were slightly different . . .
Day 1: Two exhibit staffers had been able to completely disassemble and pack the five panels with AV in one day. Proceeded to take the snake model apart and pack the “swamp” flooring on which the model rested. Museum’s social media staff took several pictures.
After lunch, the moving crew came by for us to transport the model pieces to the Paleontology storage. This is a crew that often works with Paleontology, moving large fossils as needed. The model pieces were moved quickly and safely to Paleo, where they were packed.
So, there you have it! Now, learn which exhibitions are currently on the road.