Public collections

A Museum and Free Library are as necessary for the mental and moral health of the citizens as good sanitary arrangements, water supply and street lighting are for their physical health and comfort.

Thomas Greenwood, 1888.

The pursuit of making collections available to the public, to browse, to study, to admire and to inspire is a phenomenon that unites museums, galleries, libraries, archives, heritage centres and historic sites and we have experience across all of these sectors.

Over the last 20+ years we have worked for and helped countless museums, libraries and archives get creative with their public collections, as exhibitions, digital projects, and as research.

We can:

  • partner you if you need curatorial support for your next collections project
  • provide guidance for collections-based audience development
  • make your collections digital through 2D or 3D digitisation
  • assess your collections management data
  • assess your curatorial skills and needs
  • look at rationalising your collection and transforming collections storage and workspaces, including digitisation suites
  • help you re-evaluate your collection’s social and cultural value, for example, through decolonising your practice or contemporary collecting
  • advise you on ethical issues that arise from the care and interpretation of your collections.
Repackaging and cleaning rare photographs, negatives and glass plates, Morrab Library Photo Archive, 2016.
Assessing and organising the move of the Elizabeth Treffry Collection on Women in Cornwall and Scilly from Krowji to the Morrab Library on behalf of the Hypatia Trust, Summer 2018.
Visible storage research in New Zealand: Inventive storage of shells, Porirua Museum, Aotearoa New Zealand, August 2017.
Behind the scenes in the stores and labs of New Zealand’s film and sound archive, Nga Taonga, August 2017. Providing inspiration for researching Cornwall’s shared storage needs across several museums and collection types including sound and film.
Main contemplates a wax model of a ancient human's head and face with little pin marks over it.
Collections-led audience development event at Royal Cornwall Museum, March 2017.
Museum display of wooden and glass cabinets displaying rows of objects with labels, in the centre a large stuffed bird, an albatross.
Assessing collections at Wisbech Museum, Cambridgeshire, June 2017.
Two portraits hanging side by side in gold gilt frames. One a woman wearing a lace cap and dark blue-black dress, the other a man with short brown hair coming over his forehead, a high collar and black coat.
Facilitating a collections review at Sunderland Museum and Winter Gardens (Sunderland Culture) July 2017.