Welcome to day 1 of the 2022 Online
World Forum For Motor Museums seminar
Below you can find today’s presentations
Feel free to select the full screen button in the lower right corner of each video
The Racing Car as Art and Artifact: Interpretive Strategies, Visitor Experience, and the Ongoing Struggle for Relevance
Dr. Paul Baxa, Bryan Gable
Around the world, several museums have treated the racing car as both artifact and work of art. In 1909, F. T. Marinetti declared the racing car as “more beautiful than the Victory of Samothrace” in his Futurist Manifesto. In the 1990s, Marinetti’s claim seemed to be vindicated when the Museum of Modern Art in New York City used Marinetti’s slogan as the centerpiece for an exhibition on Ferrari Formula One cars. This session will explore the question: to what extent has the automobile, and the racing car in particular, become a work of art? To many, a race car is “cool” and “fast,” and nothing more. However, the race car has limitless potential of which to teach elements of physics, chemistry, and technology to younger generations. As museums face an ongoing struggle for “relevance,” what are some modern strategies automotive museums can employ to provide focused, curriculum-driven historical interpretation in order to increase visitorship? Indeed, museums have a duty to serve their communities as educational institutions. Historic race cars carry stories about their design and purpose. Yet, that is lost if curatorial teams fail to create interpretive strategies in order to engage visitors who are not automotive experts. As museums seek new audiences, how can the race car be repurposed to capture the attention of non-enthusiasts?
Bio: Paul Baxa is Associate Professor and Chair of the History Department at Ave Maria University. Dr. Baxa received his doctorate at the University of Toronto specializing in the cultural history of Italian Fascism. His scholarly interests included the history of motorsport and he is currently working on a book on the Mille Miglia and motorsport during the Fascist era in Italy.
Bio: Bryan Gable is the Special Collections Assistant Coordinator at Revs Institute®. He assists with accessions and special exhibitions, processes various archival and image collections, and helps researchers with a variety of projects. He received his MA in Public History from the University of North Carolina at Charlotte where he designed the exhibit “Underbird Rising: The Racing Career of Alan Kulwicki.” Bryan is also a weekly columnist for Frontstretch.com.
Provenance Research for Museum Employees and Their Patrons
The cars in a museum can easily be considered works of art. The history of how these vehicles were used, bought and sold and physically changed over time is called provenance. An accurate provenance of a vintage car is often used to establish and support the value of the car. Provenance research is also key for establishing the authenticity of the car. Museum curators should be especially interested in the provenance of the vintage cars in their collections for both legal and historical reasons. Provenance enables a curator to establish a complete story from the day the car left the factory or workshop until it reached its current museum. Provenance research has traditionally been a slow, painstaking, and expensive process. With the greater attention to provenance research the tools of provenance research are now rapidly evolving. Provenance findings can be cause for great joy. They can also be the expensive end of many hopes and dreams. Attendees will be provided with up to date provenance research resources.
Bio: Attorney Jeffrey Murray has been researching the provenance of rare vintage cars for the past fifteen years. His company in New Hampshire is Vintage Car Research LLC. He has researched the provenance of hundreds of vintage cars. His presentation will be filled with practical tried and true, easy to use research resources and methods. He will show both the novice and experienced researcher where the research land mines are in provenance research and how to deftly negotiate around them.
There’s an App for That: Creating a Museum Mobile App
Genevieve Hauck, Lydia Ireland, Lindsay Mancuso