DISPLAY UPDATE – Blog # 7
One thing I have learned in my 9 weeks here is that putting on an exhibition or permanent display (as mine is) takes far more than “throwing a bunch of watches in a display case”
The selection of the timepieces is fairly straight a forward process, it is what follows that takes the time.
The first few weeks were laying out the timepieces in their cases, not so difficult, but getting a layout that is not to “busy” is harder. We want to show all the relevant and exciting pieces, so thinning it down, takes time and patience.
Next two weeks were writing each item descriptors that is a tougher job than I imagined especially as my knowledge is “vintage” timepieces from the beginning of the wristwatch to say the 70s.
I had to put in a lot of research on electrical pieces like Hamilton “Pacer”, Bulova “Accutron” and Hamilton “Pulsar”. Even studying “quartz” taught me much, the differences (and reasons for the differences) between “electrical” and “quartz”, then exactly what is termed quartz digital and what is quartz analog all took interesting research.
I wanted all the descriptors that are on display, to not just explain technical features, but the history of these pieces, their cost in (say) 1970 versus current day value terms. Not “just” where the watch sat in Horology, but more importantly “why”?
They say “every picture tells a story” therefore in many cases I enhanced the timepiece with original adverts or schematics of how that technology was applied. It all adds to a better experience of the items on display.
These “descriptors” originally written by me, then must go up to our Media Department for proof reading, not just a “comma” here or a “full stop” there, but full checking that the English flows, correct verbs are used etc. I can assure you the Lady (Freda) had a lot of work to do. Although this added to time and frustration to me in waiting, the results prove it is an essential step in the process.
Then head of Media has one more look over them and again spots ‘things’ like “what is RHS”? “What is LHS” – some may know, others not, so I changed labels to (left) and (right). Then on sundial ageing, I had put “9 B.C.” instead of “9 century B.C.” Big error, as we can either say 900 years B.C. or 9th century B.C. My error now corrected.
Now all proof read and checked I spent weeks 7 and 8 printing, cutting and mounting each description on boards and placing in the cabinets. Lots of fine tuning here so it looks as pleasing as possible. Finally I went over every piece once again, and added different styles of mounts or stands, to give a more “three dimensional effect’ to the exhibit.
Last but not least, I am working with the graphics designer both in discussing ideas and scanning in pictures. The “graphics” will make or break the exhibit.
Here are the latest pictures – enjoy - Adam
First a new addition to automatics kindly donated Emre Kiris – Bulgaria. A very important piece, not previously owned by the museum.
The Automatic Display Case
Raising of certain pieces – a more visual experience.
2000 to Present – size matters
The overall 2000 to present display
1900 to 1920 – Ladies First and Trench Watches
Finally Character and Novelty