Friday, 26 October 2012

Behind the scenes at the museum

Photograph by Richard Barnes from 'Animal Logic', Princeton University Press 
Few things are more alluring than behind the scenes access to museums and galleries. My favourite view of an exhibition is always when the wrappings have come off and the works are leaning on sponge blocks against the walls, and you can squat down in front of them and get nose to nose in this totally unfamiliar way.

A recent book by American photographer Richard Barnes documents amazing storage and installation scenes in natural history museums. They reminded me, of course, of Neil Pardington's The Vault series, and Laurence Aberhart's photographs of the pre-merger National Museum.

Laurence Aberhart, Orca skull, Taranaki St., Wellington, 4 October 1995, 1995. Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa

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