Update from the Canterbury Cultural Collections Recovery Centre – October 2014

By Moya Sherriff, Administrator, Canterbury Cultural Collections Recovery Centre

Activities within the Recovery Centre have been falling into a steady pattern with different groups working on their collections throughout the week. As always, every day unravels countless objects, each with their own fascinating story. As a fledgling museum professional, I am very aware that it must be wrong to have favourites but check out what my next packaging project is!

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Larry the Lamb!

Canterbury Rugby mascot Larry’s original headgear was eventually superseded by lighter, more agile equipment, giving him the ability to take on other rugby mascots as seen in this clip (warning – if you are from Auckland you may find these images disturbing!) http://thenewzealandjournal.blogspot.co.nz/2009/10/why-cant-larry-lamb-other-air-nz-cup.html

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Member from Centre of Contemporary Art, photographing some of the collection.

On a more serious note, since my last post we have welcomed Lyttelton Museum’s Collection Technician, April Guenther, into the Recovery Centre. April is here four days a week, furiously cataloguing and photographing their collection. A real highlight is Baden Norris’s (Lyttelton Museum’s original Curator) weekly visits. April (and on occasion myself) hangs on his every word as he brings the collection to life with stories of adventure, dodging bullets and collecting stones. Check out their Facebook page for ‘object of the week’ – or if you are in Lyttelton pop into Grubb Cottage and marvel at their new exhibition, “At Home with the Grubbs”.

During July, Daniel Stirland from Canterbury Museum came in to speak about the principles of Preventative Conservation. He spoke about the importance of good handling (as poor handling contributes to 90% of damage to museum collections!), the importance of a stable environment, good packaging as well as the dangers of high light levels, air pollutants and pests. A highlight for me was the clip from “Friends” where Ross, Chandler and Rachael illustrated how they moved a couch. May not be the best way to move a museum object!

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A member of the Cotter Medical History Trust inspecting a relative humidity/temperature meter during the Preventive Conservation tutorial

All images courtesy of the Canterbury Cultural Collections Recovery Centre.

Read more posts by Moya Sherriff