Wednesday, March 30, 2011

UPDATE 03/29/11: Graphics Design Meeting

Ellen, Jon, Michele, Louise, and Michael met to go over the graphic designs for Michael's Museum. Ellen and Jon showed us some of what they have been working on including the Exhibit Sign which will take the form of a banner painted as a mural on the outside of the exhibit wall and the logo print ad which will be used in printed information, signs, media, etc.

Everyone was very excited about what they saw, constructive criticism was given, suggestions made, and ideas shared. Ellen and Jon will come back with final drafts of their work in time for the Team Meeting on April 12.

Hurray, Michael's Museum: A Curious Collection of Tiny Treasures gets closer and closer to its May 13th opening!

UPDATE 03/29/11: Fabrication & Installation

Today Michele, Mark, and Michael met to discuss loose ends and to go over the collection schedules and installation detail.

First we took a tour of the cabinets which are now out of storage and happy to be in the workshops of The Chicago Children's Museum. 

Next we discussed the collections and all of the cabinet interior detail that needs to be addressed. 

Finally we talked about staging in the "New Museum Offices" to begin installation of collection items into the cases and about moving all of the collections from storage to the museum. 

Work will begin in the offices during April on securing as many collections on their cabinet shelves as are possible and/or wise to do before the cabinets are actually moved into and secured in the exhibit space. 

Construction and painting that will take place at the end of April and exhibit installation will begin May 1.

The Chair and Side Table 

Cabinets under construction


 More Cabinets
And more cabinets 

 The "Tower" and "Sofa"
The "Corner Cabinet"

What Can I Do at Michael's Museum?

Look at the collections in cases, on shelves, in cabinets, and on the walls.

Peek inside one or all of the 18 drawers in the Drawer Cabinet.

Play on the floor, sorting colorful objects into various containers.

Sit on the sofa and read or talk or rest or visit.

Sit in the chair and think or remember or share stories.

Lay on the floor and peek through the Museum Mouse Entrance to get a mouse's point of view of the collections.

Work at the Curator's Desk as you assemble objects by shape, size, or type.

Try to spot objects in the coffee table from a list of 25, 50, and 100 items.

Go on a Treasure Hunt by looking at little pictures on a laminated card and trying to locate them in Michael's Museum.

Check out the Peek-A-Boo Cabinets that have collections in them but which allow you to peek further into the exhibit or out into the Great Hall.

Read books about collecting and about famous Chicago collections.

Organize a borrowed from the museum collection in one of the fancy cabinets on the walls.

Read tiny Quotations from Michael with a magnifying glass.

Have your picture taken while sitting at the Curator's Desk.

See the cabinet that contains a Changing Collection from Visiting Collectors like you.

Think about how you might display your collections at home.

Read about the history of Michael's Museum.

Tell stories about what you see. Make up stories about what you see.

Try to imagine where all the items came from and how they were assembled.

Collect some objects from the Wall Drawers and arrange them on shelves located around the room.

Write in the journal, share your thoughts and ideas about collecting.

Think about what you collect at home or what you would like to collect.

Look at the items in the cabinet that contains Michael's Special Collection.

E-mail a picture of you and your collection to the museum to be included in our Michael's Museum Friend's Frame.

See if there are any items in Michael's Museum that you do not recognize or know the name for.

Use a magnifying lens to study little items in the Teeniest Collection cabinet.

As you walk around the exhibit, get a laminated card and check out the list of the names of over 100 collections.

Visit with the Curator on specially scheduled days.

Ask questions about what you see.

Visit the Michael's Museum Corner of the Gift Shop on your way home.

...and that is probably just he beginning!

Today's Tiny Treasure: Plastic Fish

Thursday, March 17, 2011


You'll be seeing this word a lot around Michael's Museum at The Chicago Children's Museum on Navy Pier. Watch for the opening on Friday the 13th of May, 2011.


Curator (from Latin cura, care), means manager, overseer.
Traditionally, a curator or keeper of a cultural heritage institution (e.g.,gallerymuseumlibrary or archive) is a content specialist responsible for an institution's collectionsThe object of a traditional curator's concern necessarily involves tangible objects of some sort, whether it be inter aliaartwork, collectibles, historic items or scientific collections. More recently, new kinds of curators are emerging: curators of digital data objects, and bio-curators.

Come visit Michael's Museum. Sit at the Curator's Desk, sort, classify, investigate.

Today's Tiny Treasure: Woven Grass Mexican Doll

Sunday, March 13, 2011

UPDATE: 03/08/11 Marketing & Opening Night Party

Natalie, Brett, and Michael met over lunch to discuss issues of beginning marketing for Michael's Museum and details of the opening night party that Michael will be hosting from 6:00 to 8:00 by private invitation to close family, friends, and supporters.

Besides a general "catch up" on progress of MM@CCM, the e-mail interview between Natalie and Michael was discussed further. It will be appearing in the April e-Newsletter. Natalie will pull the content together based on the interview and will share with Michael for review before sending.

Brett and Michael discussed the list of details for the evening celebration and clarified any specifics as necessary. This conversation will continue as we approach the May 13th event and day time ceremonies will be addressed as well as we draw closer to the date.

UPDATE: 03/08/11 Core Team Meeting

Jenny reviewed the elevations and work done at the earlier Design Development meeting.

Detail of the "Curator's Desk" was discussed including activity cabinet, Teeniest Collection Cabinet, journal with attached pen, room for activity trays, tools, and supplies etc.

We discussed fabric for the drapery, consumables, manipulatives, containers, supplies for the educational activities, and wall colors. Timelines and key deadlines for the Core Team were looked at. Photos of newly created collections were shared and the first "Visitor's Collection" picture of "Rabbits" (very appropriate to the Spring opening of MM@CCM) were discussed.

UPDATE: 03/08/11 Design Development

At this meeting we continued with a review scheduling, timelines, tracking, getting estimates, placing orders to name just a few.

Collection locations are now finalized including those which will stay in their own cabinet and are already included in Jenny's elevation drawings as well as what we affectionately have come to call "Orphan Collections." They are, by definition, the ones that in their original home were on built in book cases, hung from the walls, piled on top of other cases, located on the floor, etc. and therefore needed to be relocated. The Orphan Collections will go into repurposed cabinets from previous CCM exhibits and have been named: The Top Shelf, The Tower, The Corner Cabinet, and The Drawers.

Here are a few pictures of some of the work that has begun on the cabinets:

1) The Tower - Newly painted and covered for protection
2) The Corner Cabinet - newly painted
3) An Activity Cabinet - newly constructed and painted - to be placed on the Curator's Desk
4) Misc existing collection cabinets waiting to be reinforced
and glass replaced with plexiglass. 

Today's Tiny Treasure: Plastic Train with Engineer