Welcome to WAM Updates

WAM Updates are short, informal posts that put the spotlight on small, but exciting, Museum-related projects, such as the addition of a new painting or sculpture to a gallery. They also serve as updates on staff, new services or programs, and other WAM news.

We hope you like reading the Updates! If you are interested in learning about something specific, or have a suggestion for a WAM Update, please update us at wamupdates@worcesterart.org

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Reframing Rockwell

From November 5, 2014 through February 8, 2015, come see Norman Rockwell, on view in the American Gallery on the 4th Level. This focused exhibition features the oil painting, The Wonders of Radio (2002.526), the large-scale drawing, Study for “The Nightwatchman” (2014.142), recently acquired from the Higgins Armory Museum, and letters related to the drawing’s manufacture.

Did you know that in preparation for the drawing’s display a new frame was purchased and customized by the museum’s Collections and Fabrication Department in consultation with the Curatorial and Conservation Departments? The Nightwatchman is a charcoal and graphite drawing on paper adhered to particle board. The drawing extends to the edges of the board, which have an irregular profile, the result of being cut down in the past. Pressure fitted into its frame, the drawing’s delicate edges were vulnerable to damage.

A new frame and liner were selected not only to better protect the drawing’s edges, but also to complement the drawing. In addition to being able to provide additional protection to an artwork, a liner also serves as an aesthetic component to a frame. In this case, a white liner was selected to match the white liner surrounding The Wonders of Radio, uniting the drawing and painting for this exhibition. We hope you enjoy the new presentation of The Nightwatchman!

Click here more information about Norman Rockwell

- Eliza Spaulding, Paper Conservator

Above left: The back of Study for “The Nightwatchman” after being inserted into its white liner, which is padded with felt and covered with polyester film to protect the drawing’s delicate edges.

Above right: Study for “The Nightwatchman” after being inserted into its white liner, which is padded with felt and covered with polyester film to protect the drawing’s delicate edges.

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Collections Online

Hello WAM fans! Allow me to introduce myself to the frequent visitor as I mainly reside underground with the object of our precious collection. I’m Sarah Gillis, Assistant Registrar for Image Management, and I’m the point person to make information about the collection available to you!

Did you know that only about 5% of the collection is on display at one time? We’re making every effort in the Registrars office to share as much of the collection with you the visitor as possible! We are passionate about this collection, and being able to work closely with the objects on a daily basis is such a treat! I’m working as hard as possible to put as much of the collection out there as possible. With over a century of history within this collection, it’s a lot of work making these objects available to you. Part of what I do every day is make sure that the record has all of the required cataloguing information, and hopefully an image. This could sometimes require further researching into our Curatorial files

Since we launched our online collection search in July 2012, more than 14,000 object records have been made available for your viewing and research enjoyment (although not all of them have been photographed yet)! Some of the records, such as the Freakes have zoomify enabled so you can get closer to the details of the painting than you can within the gallery spaces!

So please, take some time to enjoy more of the collection!

- Sarah Gillis, Assistant Registrar for Image Management

Image: Wine Cup, Venetian, 16th-18th century, glass, 11.1 x 9.2 cm (4 3/8 x 3 5/8 in.), Worcester Art Museum (MA), Gift of Mrs. Philip L. Carbone, 1937.104
Image © Worcester Art Museum, All Rights Reserved.

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