No updates from me in a while, but the good news is that I have been doing something during all this time! I so enjoyed my last stint of voluntary work in an archive that I decided to take the plunge again and try more of the same in a different location. I was lucky enough to secure myself one day a week at the superb library and archive of The Society of Antiquaries of London, based in Piccadilly. Continue reading
On my recent travels I popped into Madrid’s Museum of America, a favourite of mine since I first went there a few years ago. This is an overlooked gem of a museum, located to the north-west of the city center. There are so many fascinating artefacts here that you could easily spend days looking at them all in detail. Not having quite that long to spare, I made do with a few highlights which go some way to show the sheer breadth of the collection there.
Friday 9th June 2017 was International Archive Day and during that day I was lucky enough to be spending some time in one of the most culturally rich cities in Europe: Madrid. In previous posts, I’ve spoken about the most famous cultural attraction here – the Museo del Prado – and some of the lesser-known ones such as the Museo Cerralbo and the Naval Museum. Madrid contains many archives, museums and heritage sites, all worth their weight in gold due to the enormous wealth of history contained within them. I wanted to reflect on this history in the context of some of the things I’ve seen over the past few days here in the city, and to think about the connections which these institutions forge between the past and the present.
Around this time of year, I would normally expect to be restarting my studies. This year, however, I have decided to take a break from the course. This is for a number of reasons, but most of all it’s because I feel that I would benefit at this point from some more practical experience in order to put the skills which I have learned to use in real situations. My studies have involved a lot of work on sample classifications, reports on imaginary scenarios and a lot of thinking about the theoretical side of knowledge organisation, but applying these is a very different skill. Luckily there is an archive reasonably close to where I live, and back in July they just happened to be asking for volunteers to help catalogue some of their small collection.
At the end of August, I was lucky enough to be invited to present a poster at the CILIP Cataloguing and Indexing Group biennial conference. This year, the theme was ‘Innovation and Discovery’, and for my own contribution I decided to create a poster* based on my metadata research proposal for my final module last semester. You can view details of the conference here, including copies of all the papers and posters which were presented. It took place over three days at the University of Swansea’s brand new Bay Campus, so with my newly-printed poster safely ensconced in a cardboard tube, I trundled over to Wales on the train to attend the first two days of events.
It’s been a long time with no update, which of course means things have been pretty busy over the last few months. The good news is that I’ve finished the second year of my Masters, passing all the modules (phew!), and so now I can count myself as a holder of a Postgraduate Diploma in Information Management! The last couple of modules were very challenging but also very relevant to the work which I hope to engage in over the coming years.