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Factors Affecting Museum Artifact Selection

  • Date Submitted: 03/24/2010 05:10 PM
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Factor's Affecting Museum Artifact Selection

Museum's are a staple in our lives and much of what we learn in class can be taught first-hand at a trip to an exhibit. With thousands are artifacts in a single museum, it is important that each item has relevance to it's particular exhibit. An artifact's intention should be easily identified by the audience and a clear picture as to why it belongs at the museum should be established. Museum's have a great responsibility to educate the public, and it is very important to properly select the appropriate artifacts to do just that.
Museums can be infatuated with finding the rarest or most expensive artifacts. However, this can either put the museum in great debt, as the rarer it is the more it usually costs. It might have sentimental value, but it can also have an abstract or little to no meaning at all that does not educate the public. Many times if price isn't mentioned at all, viewer's will not be attracted to a meaningless item. The famous painting “Black Circle” went for tens of millions of dollars however it has little to no meaning as it only teaches the audience how seemingly easy it is to become rich. This was proven with the Museum of Modern Arts as poor management and not culling less meaningful holdings led to a deficit of about $1 million dollars per year. Museums are on a strict budget, and that budget should solely be used for picking the artifacts that have great relevance to an exhibit and are clear to teach the public about that exhibit.
The museums are there to educate the public. A museums goal should be to provide a 3rd-person perspective and an unbiased view of a vision, culture or an event. The exhibits are teaching history to the public, and if their view of history is bias, they are re-writing history and misinforming a large amount of people who haven't learned otherwise. If the museums funding doesn't solely come from donations or government funding, it can have an effect on the types of...

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