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

Tuesday, April 28, 2020

Getting Pandora out of her Box

In the world of the collections management and registration, nimbleness and a willingness to think outside of the box is ever constant. As the collection database administrator, it sounds like my job is self-explanatory. So, if someone had asked me if I ever planned on developing a niche specialty for large object movement, I would have laughed and said no.

A protective box was placed around the sculpture prior to moving it.

Well, after over a year of close planning with multiple specialists, I now know the ins and outs of what is involved to move large, heavy objects—especially those trapped in WAM’s basement storage rooms!

Between November 4 – 6, 2019, Edward Augustus Brackett’s masterwork, Shipwrecked Mother and Child (1904.64), was freed from her storage tomb and put back onto public view. You may remember that the move was covered by the Worcester Telegram & Gazette and I was interviewed for WAM’s winter/spring 2020 issue of access magazine. However, since I am unable to take breaks from my desk at home to go admire her beauty, here’s a more in-depth, pictorial play-by-play of how the sculpture was moved.

One of the most stressful parts of this journey was clearing some major
 ductwork and landing on the other side. We just cleared it!

I hope, when you can visit our galleries again, you see the sculpture to gain an even deeper appreciation for what was involved to make her available to you. Please watch the exciting time-lapse video showing only one phase of the journey. Enjoy!

Congratulations to the intrepid team that successfully completed the move
of the sculpture to its current home.

  • A recent WAM Update, “Conserving a Shipwrecked Mother and Child,” examines the beginning stages of the sculpture’s conservation treatment. Read more here.

  • Watch the time-lapse video that shows one phase of the journey.

  • View a more in-depth, play-by-play of how the sculpture was moved here.

  • Learn more about this important conservation project here.

—Sarah Gillis
Associate Registrar for Collection Documentation
April 28, 2020

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