Monday 22 April 2013

Over the airwaves

If I could make a couple of extra days in each week, I would spend them on two things:

  1. I would write a book. (I don't know what book. But I would write A Book.)
  2. I would start a podcast. (Heavily influenced by my love of the Slate Culture Gabfest.)

Of course, it's not really time holding me back, it's priorities and commitments I've already elected. Luckily, while no-one else can write my book for me, two people have started a podcast that does one of the things I would love it.

Museopunks is a brand-new podcast from Suse Cairns and Jeffrey Inscho. As Suse explains in a blog post:
Museopunks is a podcast for the progressive museum. Each month, we’ll invite passionate practitioners to tackle prominent issues and big ideas facing museums in the modern age. With innovation, experimentation and creativity as focus points, Museopunks features forward-thinking people and projects that push the sector into new territories.
The first episode of Museopunks has just been released, launched at Museums and the Web. Titled 'Kick out the jams', the episode investigates museums in "the age of scale". It begins with Jeffrey and Suse introducing themselves, then looking at this idea with two people: the Smithsonian's Michael Edson, and New Zealand's own Paul Rowe, of Vernon Systems.

There's a really interesting tension touched on in the podcast: the question of how much our visitors want us to innovate. Many museums have adopted the imperative Innovate or die; museums also attract curious, questioning, restless employees. I often find myself wanting to pursue ideas and experiences that are quite wide of the mark of the 'traditional' museum, and I've increasingly found myself wondering What would we do if we stripped ourselves back to our basic building blocks: a container, lots of objects, some people, and the internet. What would we make out of them then?

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