Histories of Exhibition Design in the Museum: Makers, Process and Practice

Kate Guy (Editor), Hajra Williams (Editor), Claire Wintle (Editor)

Research output: Book/ReportBook - authoredpeer-review


Histories of Exhibition Design in the Museum: Makers, Process and Practice offers a new model for understanding exhibition design in museums, from the nineteenth century to the recent past. It moves beyond the power of the finished exhibition over both objects and visitors to highlight historic exhibition making as a human and material process – an ongoing task of adaptation, experimentation and interaction involving intellectual, creative and technical choices. It highlights the labour in making museum exhibitions, presenting design as filled with personal and professional demands on the body, senses and emotions. Contributions from historians, anthropologists and exhibition makers around the world focus on histories of identity, collaboration and hierarchy ‘behind the scenes’ of the museum. They argue for an emphasis on the everyday objects of museum design, and the importance of a diverse range of actors within and beyond the museum, from carpenters and label writers to volunteers and local communities. Institutional memory in museums is often opaque, and previously learnt lessons are easily forgotten. This book offers scholars and professionals across the museum and design sectors insight into how past methods still influence museums today, revealing the lineage of current processes and supporting more informed contemporary practice.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages296
ISBN (Electronic)9781003245377
ISBN (Print)9781032156941, 9781032156934
Publication statusPublished - 30 Nov 2023


  • museums
  • exhibitions
  • design history


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