2021 was almost as crazy as 2020. This year’s students took “Introduction to Museum Studies” as a “hybrid” class, part synchronous/digital and part person-to-person. The students did an amazing job creating a historical exhibit about Atlanta in the 1910s under these challenging circumstances. Luckily, conditions improved as the semester went on and the weather warmed up. We were able to meet in person more frequently — usually outside. Unlike 2020’s class, these students held a real opening at the end of the semester, an outdoor pop-up exhibit. It was definitely different with everyone wearing masks. After the opening, the class also built their exhibit in the computer lab gallery space in Old CE at Georgia Tech. It will be open to visitors from April through the summer semester.
In the Spring of 2020, Covid-19 interrupted our class, “Introduction to Museum Studies.” Everyone packed up with short notice and scattered across Atlanta, the country, and the world. Nonetheless, this awesome class finished its exhibit by meeting online, in chats, and through digital discussions. The instructions remained the same — each student created their own panel, as though they had their own museum wall. Because it’s a history exhibit, I encouraged students to include extra words, whether context, stories, or important quotes. A physical version of the exhibit was up in the summer and fall of 2020. To see the online version click here: The Fab and the Foul: Atlanta in the 1920s.
More exhibits from Carla Gerona’s Classes
In the fall of 2019, I taught an experiential digital history seminar called, “Revolutions in early American History.” The class chose to build a digital exhibit called, “Women in the Revolutionary War.” Here is a link to their website: https://revolutionarywomenofthewar.weebly.com/
At Georgia Tech I have been teaching a studio class called “Introduction to Museum Studies” for over ten years. Our main goal is to learn about museums and history as we construct an exhibit. The show topic changes every year. In the two sample exhibits above (one about Atlanta Parks and another about Stone Mountain) students created panels as though each student had their own wall of a museum gallery. In 2011, the class built that exhibit at Georgia Tech’s Robert C. Williams Paper Museum. See the Architectural Tourist’s blog about this show: “A Paper Trail: The Travels of Dard Hunter”
Special thanks to Cindy Bowden and August Giebelhaus for conceiving this class, and to all the History and Sociology staff, chairs, and faculty for their support. Thanks also to Terry Kearns for documenting the 2011 exhibit.