University of Cambridge Museums

Projects, events and news from the University of Cambridge Museums

Ask A Curator Day – 2015


Yes! #AskACurator, the Twitter hashtag that gives people the chance to fire questions at curators in museums across the world, is back, and once again some of the University of Cambridge Museums will be taking part.

If you’re on Twitter and have a burning question about the collections in our museums, do get involved on Wednesday 16 September and see if our Curators and museum staff can provide the answers you’re after.

Example questions from last year included:

What is the weirdest/coolest/most memorable reaction to an object you’ve had from a member of the public? #askacurator


Do you still collect artefacts in Africa or Oceania today? What type? #askacurator

I won’t give you the answers; you’ll just have to ask again! Log on to Twitter, follow the participating museums and get questioning. The following @CamUnivMuseums will be taking part: @ClassArch, @FitzMuseum_UK, @PolarMuseum, @MAACambridge and @SedgwickMuseum

Participating Curators and Staff Members

Museum of Classical Archaeology

Dr Susanne Turner, Curator
Susanne manages and administers the Museum, curates its collections, and develops the museum service. Her speciality is Greek and Roman Art, especially sculpture and cast collections.
Susanne will be answering your questions from 10am – 5pm


The Fitzwilliam Museum

Helen Strudwick, Egyptologist
Helen is an Egyptologist at the Fitzwilliam Museum, whose special subject is ancient Egyptian funerary beliefs and practices, focussing especially on the private tombs at Thebes. She is currently the co-curator of Death on the Nile, an exhibition of Egyptian coffins which will be on display at the Museum from February to May 2016. Helen will be answering your questions from 1 – 1.30pm


The Polar Museum

Greta Bertram, Antarctic Project Cataloguer
Greta works on a project to catalogue and research the Antarctic objects in The Polar Museum’s collections. This involves describing and measuring all of the objects, researching the expeditions they were used on and the people who used them, and cross-referencing with photographic, archival and library material.
Greta will be answering your questions from 9am – 12 noon

Willow Silvani, Documentation Assistant
Willow is responsible for the day-to-day management of all aspects of registration relating to the movement of museum objects into and out of the Museum, and is the main contact for administering the Museum’s programme of national and international loans for temporary exhibitions.
Willow will be answering your questions from 1 – 4.30pm


The Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology

Dr Jody Joy, Senior Archaeology Curator
Jody is responsible for British and European Archaeology. He specialises in the archaeology of northwest Europe during the first millennium BC.  He is also interested in human remains, particularly exploring issues surrounding display and storage in museums. He has previously worked at the British Museum as Curator of European Iron Age Collections.
Jody will be answering your questions from 12 noon – 1pm and 2 – 3pm

Dr Ali Clarke, Research Associate, Pacific Presences
Ali is a research assistant on the project Pacific Presences: Oceanic Art and European Museums (2013 – 2018). The project investigates Pacific collections in a bid to further advance understandings of materiality and cross-cultural histories, as well as present day museum policy and practice.
Ali will be answering your questions from 9.30am – 4pm

Dr Trish Biers, Archaeologist for the Macdonald Institute and Outreach Assistant
Trish is bioarchaeologist and a member of the Education and Outreach team at the Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology (MAA) in Cambridge. Her research interests include archaeology of the Americas, Andean bioarchaeology, anthropology of gender, paleopathology, archaeological chemistry, and museum and heritage studies specifically repatriation and indigenous visibility.
Trish will be answering your questions from 9.30am – 4pm

Dr Mark Elliott, Senior Anthropology Curator
Mark is curator with responsibility for the Asian, European and African ethnography collections. He has carried out ethnographic research in India, and has curated several major exhibitions at the Museum and, from 2010-12, was exhibition coordinator for the redisplayed ground floor galleries.
Mark will be answering your questions from 9.30am – 4pm

Rachel Hand, Collections Manager for Anthropology
Rachel has a background in the material culture of the Americas, Africa and Oceania. Her current research interests include early Pacific material in the National Museum of Ireland and Irish collecting within the British Empire.
Rachel will be answering your questions from 9.30am – 4pm

Sedgwick Museum of Earth Sciences

Rob Theodore, Collections Assistant
Rob is a collections assistant at the Sedgwick Museum. His background is in palaeontology but his role at the museum is varied, including cataloguing and administrating the loans of the mineral and rock collections, updating and improving the museum’s permanent displays, and designing and project managing the museum’s temporary displays.
Rob will be answering your questions from 10am – 1pm and 2 – 4pm


Kettle’s Yard

Frieda Midgley,  Archivist
Frieda is working on a project to catalogue the archive collections at Kettle’s Yard and provide access to researchers.  At the core of the archive are Jim Ede’s papers, which document the wide range of influences throughout Ede’s life that gave rise to the creation of Kettle’s Yard, and include prolific correspondence not just with artist friends, but other notable figures such as T E Lawrence.
Rachel will be answering your questions from 10am – 4pm

So now it’s down to you. Start listing your questions and make sure you don’t miss the times our curators and staff members are online – you don’t want to have to wait until next year!

One comment on “Ask A Curator Day – 2015

  1. Pingback: Ask A Curator Day with University of Cambridge Museums | University of Cambridge Museums

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