Thesis Research Reflection

Carrie Jones 2015

Since our thesis class has been back in session I’ve had several “breakthrough” revelations. Over the summer my thesis became too broad and I lost sight of my main goals and initial focus. The lack of scholarly research on my topic led me to several sub topics and themes, which have given me new ideas and plenty of information to work with.

Over the past two weeks I’ve thought hard about what it is I’m looking for and what I need to do to get there. My topic is still on collaboratively curated exhibitions with a focus on community gallery spaces, community curation, and crowd-sourced exhibitions. I’m looking at these models through three different case studies and several examples. The Wing Luke Museum, the Independence Seaport Museum, and The Walters Museum of Art will serve as my case studies, given I can get an interview with someone from The Walters. My findings will illustrate the positive impact of incorporating collaborative curation and shared authority within museum spaces. I no longer feel that it is necessary to identify the audiences interested in this form of curation, but to focus on the exhibition processes instead. I’m spoken both formally and informally with several museum professionals recently and feel better about the direction that my research is heading. I’ve also decided to pick other museums for examples throughout my thesis that do these types of collaborative curation.

Overall the feedback I’ve received from museums that practice alternative curation has been extremely positive. From these interactions I’m learning more of the potential outcomes that follow and will implement those as well.There are some kinks that still need working out but I’m hoping to cut off the researching process within the next few weeks. I feel like I’ve made strides in the past few weeks, but I still have plenty more to do.