Museums Showoff 11, Tuesday 4 Feb – LINE-UP ANNOUNCED

We’re back for 2014! It’s going to be ace! We’ve planned loads of gigs so that even more amazing museums people can tell us behind-the-scenes stories and incredible projects. AND we’ve got a fab new venue.

We’re kicking things off on Tuesday 4 February, downstairs at The Slaughtered Lamb  34-35 Great Sutton Street, EC1V 0DX. Doors open 7pm. Entry is free, but we will be collecting on the door for our charity of the month, National Youth Arts Trust, which provides access to the performing arts for young people from non-privileged backgrounds. We suggest a donation of £5.

Lining up to astound, entertain and enlighten you with their tales from the museum world will be:

Steve Cross – a man who eats deep-fried gherkins for kicks.* He is also your compère for the evening: telling jokes, introducing acts and keeping things to time.

Kate Tyte – The totally unorthodox guide to museum archives! Featuring robots, Nicholas Cage, Indiana Jones and beards!

Liberate Tate – A love triangle: Tate, BP and us. What we love, what we hate, and why we want to Liberate Tate.

Nick Booth – I’m a curator at UCL where I look after the corpse of everyone’s favourite moral philosopher: Jeremy Bentham’s auto-icon. I’ll be talking about what being his curator is like, some of the work that involves and discussing some of the myths and legends that have grown up around him.

Lowri Jones – A day in the life of a Collections Storage Assistant. I’ll be talking about what moving 26,000 objects into a new building for the British Museum actually entails, and looking at some of the weird and wonderful objects that we have found buried in long-forgotten corners of the stores.

Erica McAlister – My desk is covered in maggots. My post contains maggots. My research often focuses on maggots. So often the focus of revulsion I will chat about what they are and why they’re so important. Fear not, I will bring along some of the NHM maggot collections and show how they have helped answer very important questions.

Phil Loring – Phil Loring, Curator of Psychology at the Science Museum, will describe how two extraordinary larger-than-life models of the brain have pursued, delighted, and tormented him over the past year and a half.

Natasha Powers – I’ll be using my 9 minutes to tell the story of the archaeological excavation which inspired a recent Museum of London exhibition. A tale of 19th century medical and scientific inquiry, and of two Williams, one a respectable clergyman, the other a resurrectionist with a formidable wife.

David Mentiply – We walked, and talked, our way to 26 museums in one day to raise money for Guide Dogs UK. Find out what happened in this whistle-stop talk about the Museum Marathon day!

Sarah Mahood – I’ll be talking about the Horniman Museum’s loans project Object in Focus. We loan to museums, libraries and others – what makes it easy to borrow our objects?

Dave O’Brien – What’s the value of museums? I’ll talk about how we value museums in public policy, how we use a range of ideas about value that we possibly shouldn’t and why we do this. There might even be some suggestions of how to make the value of museums a little bit clearer!

*Do not try this at home. Or anywhere else. Really. They’re disgusting.

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