I have always been fascinated by personal archives, collections, cabinets of curiosity, the hidden stories of objects and the times they have lived through. It comes up again and again in my creative workshops too - how many times have I used an object, whether in an existing museum or something simply found, as the starting point to encourage other people's writing - encouraged them to imagine the secret history of this object and what is might have seen? I find it endlessly fascinating that something we define as inanimate can actually contain so much life - real and imagined - and that both the real and imagined have value in terms of what the object means to both the world and an individual. Can we ever really define the meaning of an object? This ties in with the issue of curating and how the meaning of objects evolves with the context they are put in. Is each curator retelling the story of an object? If that can happen in an official museum context, is it not also happening in everyone's lives when they put objects and thoughts together, whether a serious or quirky collection, or something as simple and everyday as the placement of objects on a table or clothes in a wardrobe? In a virtual world that has become so obsessed with the surface and transitory meaning of things and the instant throwaway nature of images, I wanted to create a space that delves deeper - where even the seemingly throwaway can have a story - where the everyday can be curated as well as the established historically significant.
I have also always been interested in the hundreds of small museums around the world that many won't have heard of unless they are local. This blog will also seek to track some of these down and to open up their collections to a wider world. I am also interested in the collections of individuals, so these too will be featured. I see all collections of objects as potential museums, but also my love of site-specific work and of travelling makes me want to broaden this definition even further, to include the curation of places, old photos, moments in time, diaries, travel journals, memories... I am interested in the space in between objects and words too - what is there that we cannot see that adds to a story. Who is the audience in this new definition of museum? Can we curate anything? Sounds... Words... Feelings...
Museeme will explore all these questions whilst showcasing every definition of museum possible. It will also be a space for reviews of interesting relevant books and exhibitions, interviews with ordinary individuals with something they have curated, as well as archivists, artists and deep thinkers. It is also a blog that welcomes the input of all of its readers - if you have your own museum or project you want to share - from a few random found objects to a body of creative work - do write to me and I will try and feature you.
The world is a museum and everyone is its curator, and that is the spirit of museeme.