Written by George Peckham, ITP Assistant

For week 10 of the online element of ITP 2021, this week’s session focuses on temporary exhibitions!

temporary exhibition programmes are at the heart of a museum’s visitor experience. They provide a way of bringing new research to visitors as well as an opportunity to display collections in a different way, often together with objects borrowed from other museums that may not have been seen before in the UK. 

Looking at temporary exhibitions is a regular part of the ITP annual programme, which typically looks at a case study of a recent British Museum exhibition. This year is no different and this year we are looking at the recent exhibition Tantra: enlightenment to revolution as a platform to discuss planning and delivering a BM temporary exhibition. 

You can watch a curator’s tour of Tantra: enlightenment of revolution on the British Museum’s YouTube channel

This exhibition ran from 24 September 2020 to 24 January 2021 at the BM and was curated by Imma Ramos, who has also been an ITP department representative for the Asia department.

The aim of this session is to introduce the ITP 2021 fellows to all aspects of temporary exhibitions from curation to interpretation and design and display to press and marketing.

The videos in this week’s session overview of the temporary exhibition, starting with exploring the role of the curator and where the inspiration for the exhibition came from. We then hear from the Design team, who explain what the role of the designer is in creating temporary exhibitions. Members of the Collection Care team introduced what their role was in installing objects into the exhibition. Finally, the members of the Press and Marketing team shared their work in marketing this exhibition.

As this special exhibition was opened during the COVID-19 pandemic in the UK, each module in session also touches on how the exhibition was impacted by COVID and what the team learned during this experience.