A working day at UCL Art Collections
Term 2, Day 1
As museum assistant at UCL Art Collections, my job is to help with collections management and other activities in order to ensure the collection operates at maximum efficiency – a big ask given the 2 and a half members of staff (I’m the half! I work 2 days a week), over 10,000 objects and the wide and varied range of activities.
Having come back to work from the holiday closure, I have organized a research visit – a PhD. student from the University of Maryland wants to make an in-depth study of our extensive collection of the works of Winifred Knights – and chased up catalogue orders; a process made sluggish by the traditional practice where everyone tries to accomplish as little as possible before Christmas.
Today sees the start of Spring Term and a highly typical day in the Strang Print Room. Following a lecture in the ‘Works on Paper’ course – a course based at the History of Art Department and run through collaboration with Andrea, our curator – I return the artworks to their normal storage. This is easily one of my favourite parts of the job: there is always a chance of coming face to face with a Dürer or nose-to-nose with a Canaletto. There are more objects to return throughout the day as the Flaxman exhibition which ran last term is being taken down.