In five words, describe your place in the sector.
Content & Interpretation Developer, Auckland Museum.
What first drew you to the sector i.e. Do you have a particular memory of a moment that got you hooked?
Two actually, I remember as a primary school kid going to the Tairawhiti Musuem, the educator taught us a bit about art, using Phillipa Blair's paintings. I remember thinking that was quite cool. In my early 20s I worked at the NGV on collections relocation, I found myself handling Jackson Pollock's Blue Poles and quite enjoying the experience of being around this amazing object, also - the "Not fucking around here" armed Federal Police escort was quite unique too. If I could throw in a third one it'd be the Keith Haring exhibition at City Gallery in 1998 - I'd never seen anything like it and that sort of got the ball rolling too.
What challenges have you faced in your career so far?
I did postgrad in museum and heritage studies in order to transition into an exhibition developmenty type role, it was hard to get that work/study/life balance thing right, but I did and it was super rewarding. But, without a doubt, the process leading up to redundancy last year was the biggest challenge I've faced in my professional life.
Has anything or anyone in particular provided you with support?
I think a massive proportion of why I do what I do - is that I work with awesome like-minded people. I've formed many solid friendships through work and study who've been really supportive. I'm not sure where I'd be right now otherwise.
What do you think people at your own level (emerging etc) bring to the sector?It's all about fresh ideas and new approaches to disseminating stories and ideas. Museums aren't the gatekeepers of knowledge that they used to be. Emerging people know this innately, so I think there's exciting value in these minds entering the field.
The other thing is multi-disciplinarity. I was reading some stats about how many people study across fields these days. Audiences are jumping around between fields constantly and I think there's an evolving impact on expectations of museum products. People who move easily across fields are going to be more and more useful for museums.
What is a positive change you would like to see in the sector?
More contemporary culture represented in museums, less authoritative approaches to story telling, six weeks annual leave and a 32 hour working week.
What is your karaoke song?
I think I recently invented a Scandinavian death metal cover of Hey Ya by Outkast, but I can't confirm that.