Tag Archives: event review

Guest post: Holly Hyams and Jade Montserrat create a Museum of the Night at Scarborough Museums Trust

Today’s guest post comes from Holly Hyams and Jade Montserrat from Scarborough Museums Trust, who explain how they created a ‘museum of the night’ experience in two venues – including an art boxing match!

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Scarborough Museums Trust comprises two very different cultural venues in Scarborough: the Rotunda Museum – the William Smith Museum of Geology, and Scarborough Art Gallery, both housed in impressive 19th century buildings. Inspired by the desire to forge links between the worlds of geology and art, we applied for Museums at Night’s Connect10 competition, hoping to win artist Julia Vogl to create a large scale geological map at the Rotunda Museum.

a moon rising at dusk above a museum roof

Moonrise above Scarborough’s Rotunda Museum (c) Scarborough Museums Trust

Though we narrowly lost out to Newcastle’s mighty Discovery Museum, taking part in the competition was a fantastically rewarding experience. With the votes pouring in, it was incredibly encouraging to perceive the public’s support for our idea, whilst the competitive element helped create a real buzz amongst our staff. Having come second in the voting, we were determined not to let our supporters down and decided to stage alternative events both at the Rotunda Museum and Scarborough Art Gallery.

Exterior photo of an art gallery at night

Scarborough Art Gallery after dark (c) Scarborough Museums Trust

At the Rotunda, we took Museums at Night back to basics by creating a museum ‘of the night’. Museums have a unique atmosphere after hours, and we capitalised on this by displaying a selection of unexpected objects from our collections which wouldn’t usually be exhibited at the Rotunda. For one night only, taxidermy creatures of the night – owls, foxes, badgers, and hedgehogs – jostled with Victorian night-dresses, whale-oil lamps and candle-snuffers.

A taxidermy hedgehog

Hedgehog on display (c) Scarborough Museums Trust

The mood was enhanced through low-level lighting and the use of battery-operated candles which flickered eerily amongst the displays. The concept was simple but effective: visitors enjoyed the thrill of the strange atmosphere and having access to the Scarborough Collections – the name given to all the objects acquired by the Borough over the years and cared for by the Trust on behalf of the town.

taxidermy stuffed owl

Close encounter with an owl from the Scarborough Collections (c) Scarborough Museums Trust

At the Art Gallery, we again took advantage of the late night opening in order to offer visitors something different. Collaborating with Crescent Arts, a visual arts collective which supports emerging contemporary artists, we decided to host an evening of poetry and performance featuring local poet Jo Reed, Future Shorts films and an art book exchange, with events happening simultaneously at both venues (Crescent Arts being located conveniently within the basement area of Scarborough Art Gallery).

A group of smiling people in costumes

Art KO boxing match competitors (c) Scarborough Museums Trust

Thanks to the creative genius of Stuart Cameron, Director of Crescent Arts, the concept of the Big Art KO Boxing Match was born. A tongue-in-cheek performance, the boxing match involved staff members from the two organisations donning costumes and metaphorically ‘slugging it out’ in a makeshift boxing ring, whilst answering questions on art trivia. Light-heartedly embodying the age-old dispute between realist and conceptualist art, a pretend tryst between Scarborough Art Gallery and Crescent Arts was a novel way of celebrating our collaboration on the night, and one which certainly got the public talking!

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Two smiling women in a galleryJade Montserrat is currently a resident artist at Crescent Arts, Scarborough and works as Learning Assistant for Scarborough Museums Trust. She read for a History of Art BA at the Courtauld Institute of Art, followed by an MA in Drawing at Norwich University College of Arts.

Holly Hyams has worked and volunteered at a number of museums in London and Yorkshire, including the Museum of Brands, Packaging and Advertising, the Captain Cook Memorial Museum, Whitby Museum and York Castle Museum. She loves living on the North Yorkshire Coast and is currently Learning Manager at Scarborough Museums Trust.

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Thanks, Holly and Jade!

If you’re reading this and would like to write a guest post for the arts and heritage sector about any aspect of event programming, audience development or marketing, please email rosie@culture24.org.uk.

More feedback from Museums at Night 2013

Artwork with silver song lyrics on wood

‘Song (Be Bop)’, 2013, Silver leaf on wood (c) Susan Forsyth. Part of a new series of works by Connect10 artist and Zusammen choir leader Susan Forsyth, inspired by commemoration and song

We’re loving finding out more about how Museums at Night 2013 went for all the participating venues, visitors and participating artists, and we’re currently looking at responses to our venue and visitor surveys. Here’s some of the feedback we’ve received.

One reflective quote recorded before the event at Scunthorpe’s 20-21 Visual Arts Centre conveys the excitement behind the scenes of their very unusual conceptual art happening, created by artists Cullinan Richards:

It’s brilliant how everyone has come together on this from an initial idea. Most of the boxing club have never visited us before or are even interested in art and none of us knew much about boxing rings but are now learning fast as well as the history of disco lighting. It’s a bizarre collision of worlds!

The crashed cars are still happening as well and will be a nice statement piece before you enter the building.

And these are some of the most extraordinary risk assessments I’ve ever done.

This is a great photo story from the British Postal Heritage Museum Store.

Blogger Crumbolina had never managed to visit Bristol’s SS Great Britain before … until their Museums at Night event

The Beast in the Cellar: Benjamin D. Brooks shares the talk he gave about paleontologist Mary Anning at Lyme Regis Museum’s after-hours event.

A group of young people smiling in front of paintings

Art students at Corinium Museum after hours (c) Corinium Museum

Corinium Museum was “invaded” with contemporary art by University of the West of England students, and reported:

We were really thrilled with the response from visitors. Even when a piece wasn’t to their taste, it sparked comment and conversation. A number of visitors said the new look to galleries made them look at the collections in a different and more focussed way and caused them to notice objects they hadn’t seen before.

Emily Beeson, Culture24 intern and editor of Young Gold Teeth, wrote about getting hands-on making her own artworks as part of the National Portrait Gallery‘s Edgar Heap of Birds Museums at Night late opening. 

Blogger Sarah gave 10/10 to the experience of watching ‘Goodbye Lenin‘ in the unusual setting of York’s Cold War Bunker.

And finally, Gladstone Pottery Museum‘s night of music and spoken word poetry in their historic kilns come to life in this video:

If you have photos or stories to share from a Museums at Night event, please send them across to rosie@culture24.org.uk.

Adam Clarke on bringing history to life with Minecraft for Museums at Night

Our latest guest post comes from Adam Clarke, freelance artist, film maker and games-for-learning consultant. Adam describes how he got involved in the Tullie House Art Gallery Takeover, and the part Minecraft has to play in engaging new audiences with heritage and history.

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I had the opportunity to get involved in the Tullie House Art Gallery Takeover/Museums At Night project after I talked with the team about Minecraft and how it can be used to create engaging heritage and historical narratives. Excited by the possibilities this opened up, I was invited to work with the project team to create the event. Together, we set about filling the gallery space in a way that had never happened before.

Minecraft at Tully House

Visitors playing with paper craft and Minecraft at Tullie House. Photo (c) Gavin Wilson /  bangyourdrum

Using six massive interactive projections from the video game Minecraft featuring my topographical Cumbrian landscape, including a partially constructed Hadrian’s Wall, we gave people the opportunity to visit an online Minecraft world and play live with other people from around the world.

The museum archaeologist showed Roman artifacts not usually on display, giving people a chance to discover them in a new and intimate way. He also took time during the evening to build a Roman Fort and parts of Hadrian’s Wall in Minecraft with guests.

people at a screen

Minecraft in the Museum. Photo (c) Gavin Wilson / bangyourdrum

We had exclusive access to the Voxelbox server, possibly the best Minecraft creators on the planet. We were joined in person by Stephen Reid from A Higher Place, who talked about games-based learning.

We placed large glass bowls of Lego on plinths to play with, there were tables with paper-craft activities to engage in and even historical costumes for participants to get creative with dressing up and drawing. To set the ambience, there was a DJ filling the space with live mixing, and a bar.

Big screens, paper-craft, glitter, Lego, colourful lights, music, artifacts, archaeology and amazing creators all got to work to turn the museum into something truly magical, but perhaps the most magical element of all were the people who came along and completed that transformation.

People from all walks of life came together – all different ages, with different backgrounds and involvement with museums, technology, games and creative arts, including the curious few who wanted to find out what on earth it was all about – and everyone got involved. I saw people making, engaging, discovering, playing, sharing ideas and conversations, hatching plans, re-imagining familiar landscapes and finding their way around completely new spaces. Everyone was having a go, and having fun.

Artists at work

The Art Gallery Takeover. Photo (c) Gavin Wilson / bangyourdrum

I am currently developing projects using 3D printed artworks in public spaces, with a special interest in museums. Museums are traditionally about housing the intimate objects of the past. When we visit a museum, we engage in a dialogue with these objects and the people who once made them, used them or collected them. By making 3D printing accessible, museums can open up that dialogue in ways that empower the individual and community to create their own objects, their own living history and dialogues with the present, the past and the future.

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portrait-Adam Clarke

Adam Clarke is a freelance artist, film-maker and games-for-learning consultant and instructor. He has many years experience in running creative workshops for schools, museums, hospitals and within community settings, often pulling together his skills from traditional arts, digital animation/film and virtual simulations/games to deliver fun and participant led work. His is passionate about the environment, history, community participation, video games and new technology.

Thanks Adam! If you’d like to write a guest post or case study for this blog about any aspect of event planning or marketing in arts or heritage venues, please drop me a line at rosie@culture24.org.uk or call me on 01273 623336.

Museums at Night event review: Holly Parsons reports from the Weald and Downland Open Air Museum

This year’s Museums at Night was special for the Weald and Downland Open Air Museum as it was their first time participating in the festival. Museums at Night intern Holly Parsons went along on the Saturday night to discover more.

View of a field with trees and buildings in the distance.

Looking across a field towards some of Weald & Downland Museum’s buildings at dusk. All photos courtesy Holly Parsons.

The Weald and Downland Museum promised an evening that would explain how people who lived in their collection of historic buildings would have experienced the hours of dusk and darkness in the past – and the event did not disappoint!

The night began in the museum’s newly-thatched barn, where around 70 visitors meet and were split into groups of around 15 for the tour. Each tour group set off from a different starting location so that tours wouldn’t clash, and progressed around the site exploring six different traditional houses and various other stopping points.

Each building was lit as it would have been traditionally, with fires and candle light. Poplar Cottage is a rescued building from around 1630, which was built without a chimney. Its fire pit had very little ventilation, making the tiny two-room cottage very smoky inside: although this created an authentic atmosphere, it became uncomfortable to stay in the room as smoke got in our eyes!

A man stands out side a building at night

On the tour outside Victorian cottages, guided by a lantern

The tour progressed onwards to take in a shepherd’s caravan, cottages and barns. As the evening progressed and darkness fell, the reality of night-time in the past took hold … especially as we walked through the woodland and learned about the man trap, which would have been used to catch poachers on the estates.

The tour guide was very knowledgeable and knew vast amounts of information not only about the buildings and the people who lived in them, but also about the historical background of the period.

The weather also really helped to establish the atmosphere: there was a chill in the air but it wasn’t too cold, and we were kept warm by the fires in the buildings and walking between the locations. The night was clear, with some natural moonlight, so although we used torches they weren’t essential. This gave us the chance to see some of the wildlife on site, including bats and owls.

Two women in historic dress.

Some of the visitors were dressed for the occasion.

Overall, the night was a great success and the Weald and Downland Museum is worth a visit during the day or night!

It’s Elemental: Team Culture24 take on the UCL Museums at Night treasure hunt!

The Museums at Night Festival was in to its second day. The staff at Culture24 had taken on bats, community sculpture and cocktails. Representing Culture24, Jack, Holly and Amy were preparing for the real challenge; attempting to win the UCL Museum treasure hunt.

The event started at 6:30 in a small lecture theatre, taking our three treasure seekers back to their University days. The winners of this year’s event would be rewarded with the prize of £40 in Foyle’s vouchers; a great way to encourage eager museum book worms and bring out a competitive spirit.

The task was simple; the C24 team had to race around the four UCL Museums, seeking the answers to clues. Ultimately, the answers would give them an anagram and a set of numbers. Once they solved the word puzzle, they would have a phone number, which once rung, would win them the treasure hunt.

C24 team started on their travels round the four museums trying to solve the clues at each site. When they came to the Petrie Museum they found the clues notably harder. The difficulty was increased by the fact that there were several red herrings.

treasure hunt

Team C24 puzzling over the clues at the UCL Treasure Hunt

Everyone had been instructed to report to the Grant Museum promptly at 8pm for the final part of the hunt. The room was packed with teams attempting to work out the anagram, gesturing wildly at the taxidermy with their pencils.

“Treasure map! Tyrannosaurus!” Amy squeaked excitedly, causing a slight tremor in the bat skeleton behind them. From over the crowd, a wine glass shattered, and one of the museum staff jumped. “I hope that was a glass and not a jar of…anything” she said, gaily.

Suddenly, from behind the ape skeletons leaned insouciantly on the upper railing a phone rang out. Despite their valiant efforts to get all the clues right, C24 had been narrowly beaten by another team.  But they all agreed over a lovely glass of Zoology Museum wine that they had thoroughly enjoyed themselves.

Guest post: Gilly Clarkson explains how the Towner transforms through night-time events

Our last guest post before the Christmas break comes from Gilly Clarkson, who explains how the Towner’s programme of after-hours events brings their exhibitions to life and attracts new audiences.

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The ‘Plague Doctor’ with his long rat-like snout, the Black Swan, a robed figure with the head of a pig who could have stepped straight out of The Wicker Man – these are some of the ‘night folk’ who populated Towner’s latest nightclub, as revellers celebrated the weird and wonderful of British folklore!

2 people, one wearing a beaked plague doctor mask, one with leaves covering his face

The Plague Doctor and Green Man at the Towner’s Night Folk event (c) Kipperklock Photography

Through our late-night events we aim to broaden engagement with our major exhibitions (in this instance, a show about photography and folklore) and transform the gallery to create a completely different, interactive experience.

We hope to break down the barriers that some feel in engaging with contemporary art and attract a new audience, perhaps those who might be put off by the “typical” gallery-going experience.

Planning began three months earlier with our partner, Brighton music promoter Melting Vinyl. We thought about how we could integrate all elements of Towner for maximum effect – e.g. our young people’s crew were tasked with creating vinyl signs on mirrors, while public workshops produced carved turnips and corn dollies for decoration.

Two women with painted faces and elaborate hairstyles

Face painting and headdresses (c) Kipperklock Photography

The resulting event included sea shanties, live folk music and DJ sets, performance art, local ciders and ales, portrait photography, headdress making, face-painting, Morris men and the best dressing up we’ve ever seen.

One visitor summed it up: “We felt like the exhibition had come alive, as if the characters had stepped out of the photographs on the walls!”

A figure standing in an art gallery wearing a spiky headdress and trailing ribbons

One of the Gay Bogeys who attend the Hastings Jack-in-the-Green procession (c) Kipperklock Photography

Key to our approach is working with quality, locally connected bands to reach a local music-loving audience. The headline act were South Coast band Early Ghost, who have supported Beirut.

For the first time we conducted a post-event e-survey. While the results showed that we have more work to do on attracting a truly new audience to the gallery, we did see a number of successes.

  • Two-thirds of responders felt the event helped them understand the themes and concepts of the exhibition.
  • 80% said it made Towner feel more welcoming.
  • Over 40% agreed that it had changed their perception generally of museums and galleries.
  • All agreed that it’s important for galleries to programme events like this, especially outside London!
People with elaborate hats watching a performance

Visitors watching performers at the Towner’s Night Folk event (c) Kipperklock Photography

As the themes and activities change dramatically with each of our events, we are on a constant learning curve. We’ve been continuously honing aspects of operational delivery, and in future we’ll be focussing more on attracting a youth audience through young up-and-coming bands and student links.

Next time we’re going full-on electronica, returning to a nightclub that’s all about the beats!
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A woman with blonde hairGilly Clarkson is Communications and Marketing Manager at Towner, the contemporary art museum for the South East. She is passionate about developing audiences and trying to make Towner’s world-class exhibitions as widely accessible as possible. She was delighted to put forward one of the winning Connect10 competition ideas in 2012, which saw Bob and Roberta Smith come to Eastbourne for a special Museums at Nightclub!

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Thanks, Gilly!

Merry Christmas and a very Happy New Year to everyone reading this blog.

And if your New Year’s Resolution is to promote your work and the interesting events or marketing strategies your museum or gallery is using … why not write a guest post here too? Drop me an email at rosie@culture24.org.uk.

Guest Post: Signe Troost from N8 Amsterdam explains how to host a museum salon

Our latest guest post comes from Cultural Heritage student Signe Troost, who was our Museums at Night campaign intern in 2011 and has since been involved with the equivalent festival in Amsterdam.

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Museums at Night Amsterdam (N8) always takes place in November, but the organization is active all year round. It’s a platform for young museumgoers.

My favourite feature of the N8 platform are the N8 Salons. They are held one or two times a year and they are like a mini version of Museums at Night, at just one venue.

a glamorous audience seated as if to watch a fashion show in a historic room

Visitors hear from experts in the intimate surroundings of the Museum of Bags after hours (c) Faye Lui

The organization from N8 creates the program for the N8 Salons based on the collection of the hosting museum. It’s a fantastic way for museums to learn how to engage a young audience, and for the visitors to N8 Salons, it’s a great way to learn about the museum in a way that appeals to them.

Last time, the N8 Salon was held in the Museum of Bags and Purses. The program featured workshops and lectures from the museum director and an entrepreneur that started the first goodie bag service in Holland.

Women looking at a museum display case full of handbags

Fashionistas admire the collection of 20th century handbags (c) Faye Lui

There was a fashion journalist that interviewed you about your purse and its contents, after which she stole your precious bag and let other people guess what kind of person the owner of this item might be.

From the looks of my purse, a lovely example made from two old records, someone thought I had to be a middle aged transvestite. Ouch!

The most fun part was the bag swapping – the idea was to cast off your old bag and swap it for someone else’s neglected example. Take a look at the visual overview of this N8 Salon: you can see that this night wasn’t just for the ladies!

A woman doing a craft project with beads and fabric

Signe making and decorating a case for her mobile phone as part of a craft activity (c) Faye Lui

N8 Salons are a great way to do something different with your museum and to attract a new audience. I think they could work very well in the UK, too, especially in cities where a lot of young people flock together.

Wouldn’t it be great to let the students from universities in Oxford create a program for a Salon in the Pitt Rivers Museum? Or have the students from the Museum Studies course in Leeds organize an interesting and fun night at the Leeds Industrial Museum? The working 1920s cinema should trigger some great ideas…

A woman with body paint and a purple wig

Elaborate headwear at a Salon held at Amsterdam Tropical Museum

Last year, the botanical gardens in Amsterdam had the ambience of a party at tropical resort during N8. I’m sure the Kew botanical gardens would make a great venue for a Salon in the summer.

My top three tips for hosting a Salon

1) Always provide music and drinks, they connect people very easily and creates a relaxed and fun atmosphere.

A group of smiling yuong people with drinks

Drinks on arrival in the Bag Museum cafe (c) Faye Lui

2) Include young people in the planning and organization of your Salon.

3) Use your social media channels. Create a Facebook event for your Salon, ask everybody to share the event on their walls and accounts, have people blogging about your event and make sure everybody makes and shares photos. Check out the Museums at Night PR toolkit for extra tips.

Have an inspiring and exciting Salon!

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A girl in a scarf smilingSigne is a Cultural Heritage student from Amsterdam and is always looking for creative and innovating ways to engage museum audiences. She graduated in June and would like to find a job as an Assistant Curator or Exhibition Officer in the UK. If you have questions or want to share ideas, contact Signe through her LinkedIn profile.

Event review: Culture24′s Jack Shoulder encounters ghostly goings-on at Preston Manor

The second of today’s Museums at Night event reviews comes from Culture24′s Jack Shoulder, who investigated ghostly goings-on with the housemaids of Preston Manor in Brighton.

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The sun was slowly sinking below the horizon as I made my way towards one of the oldest and most haunted buildings in Brighton.

Darkness falls upon haunted historic house Preston Manor (c) Jack Shoulder

A sense of trepidation was gnawing at me: what had I let myself in for?

What if there were no crooked real estate agents waiting to be unmasked by a plucky gang of youths and their talking dog?

What if there was actually a g-g-g-ghost?

Putting me, and the rest of the group instantly at ease – no easy task considering the range of people present – was housemaid Daisy.

“You’re the reporters from the paper here about them murders?”

This bit of make-believe made the supernatural much less scary for the younger members of the group.

We were soon joined by Maisy, whose comedic entrance sets the light-hearted tone of the evening.

There were some chills, yes, but the laughs provided by the double-act stopped the nightmares from setting in, even when the ghost stories took a darker turn as the night went on.

On nights like this, there is always the danger that the fictions will overshadow the facts. However, Daisy and Maisy were able to tell the stories of the house without getting bogged down by the things that go bump in the night.

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A man with dark hairJack Shoulder is the BBC Activities Assistant at Culture24. He also works for the British Museum and volunteers with the charity Kids in Museums.

In his free time he blogs about his adventures in museums: http://jacksadventuresinmuseumland.wordpress.com/

Follow Jack on Twitter at @jackshoulder.

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Thanks, Jack!

If you went to a Museums at Night event, please let us know your thoughts by filling in this survey, so we can improve the festival in future years.

Event review: Connect10 brings Jon McGregor to RRS Discovery

Today I’m happy to share a couple of guest posts reviewing Museums at Night events from the weekend! The first comes from Mark Macleod, who wrote for us previously about how Museums at Night collaborates with the Festival of Museums.

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What should you expect when attending a Museums at Night event? Should research be done in advance? Is it appropriate to bring your parents? A number of questions I considered before attending the Connect10 winning event at the RRS Discovery in Dundee with author Jon McGregor presiding.

I’m not totally ignorant about the southern hemisphere, having visited RRS Discovery a number of times and enjoyed learning more about the travelers who used her.

When I heard that McGregor was going to talk about his residency with the British Antarctic Survey (BAS) it was definitely something I wanted to attend. A couple of scientist friends of mine have gathered data in Antarctica and I was very keen to hear how an artist’s residency worked, and discover the experience of someone expanding their comfort zone in harsh environment for subjective art rather than objective science.

McGregor immediately set the mood arriving with music and a video playing what looked like my earlier journey from St Andrews to Dundee, but which I’m guessing was his rainy trip towards RAF Brize Norton for the RAF flight to the Falkland Islands.

A suitcase full of books

Jon McGregor’s suitcase of props (c) Mark MacLeod

A brief setting up of props and the story began, from the self-titled traveling salesman. We heard about his flight and transfer to the boat RRS James Clark Ross at Port Stanley, which was to be his home until they reached the BAS base in Antarctica.

Daily pictures from the top deck provided an indication of the beauty, isolation and general sublime nature of the open sea and finally the approach with icebergs.

McGregor was constantly creating work, sending 100 word emails daily to friends and associates containing his latest news and thoughts. Before current technologies reached the BAS ship travellers were able to send one 100 word telegram every week – it really was a place to get away from it all – but now the ship is hooked up to the internet, and McGregor wanted to reflect on this development.

The final image he shared was the most poignant: the ship had been breaking through the ice layer and was now only 80 miles from the base, but the ice was thicker than usual and the captain took the difficult decision to abandon the attempt and return to Stanley to refuel and try again later in the summer.

The scientists would wait on the Falklands and expect to try again after Christmas, but McGregor would fly home. He was genuinely disappointed by the ‘so near and yet so far’ nature of the trip and although he has yet to produce an “artistic work” from the journey, he doesn’t blame his not reaching Antarctica.

Before and during the trip McGregor read memoirs, diaries and other recollections of previous adventurers to the South Pole and his observation was that on the trip down everyone was calm, factual and generally preparing themselves for the unexpected.

Even now he claims it is extremely difficult, possibly impossible, to describe such an environment as this place. What adjectives and nouns can be used for an experience and landscape that has been shared by so few?

A man with a suitcase full of books

Author Jon McGregor, about to startle Mark and his parents with a reading (c) Mark Macleod

The final part of the evening was McGregor reading from his latest publication This isn’t the Sort of Thing That Happens to Someone Like You which amused, stunned and made me regress several years and squirm as I sat beside my parents.

The most memorable piece was ‘Looking up Vagina’ which proved the hit of the night, and which McGregor explained was written after learning his friend (now a poet) read the dictionary from start to finish as a teenager.

As Sesame Street might say, “Today was brought to you by the letter V and the number (Connect) 10.” I for one am glad to have voted and secured McGregor’s  visit to Dundee.

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Mark Macleod is Operations and Projects Curator at the Museum of the University of St Andrews: you can follow them on Twitter as @MUSA_StAndrews.

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Thanks Mark! If you went to a Museums at Night event, please let us know your thoughts by filling in this survey, so we can improve the festival in future years.

Museums at Night 2012 is here!

Museums at Night is here at last – and the last 24 hours have been a whirlwind of activity for the Culture24 team behind the scenes!

Our partnership with the Huffington Post saw them republish posts from this blog showcasing various museum voices: Emma Black from Surgeons’ Hall Museum, Lindsey Braidley from Bath Museums, Teresa Fox-Wells from Borough Museum & Art Gallery, Katherine Biggs from Kew Bridge Steam Museumblogger Ben Wallace and myself.

Bompas & Parr and their team arrived at Brunel’s SS Great Britain, and have shared photos  of their Herculean task flooding the ship with lurid lime green jelly.

A woman spreading green jelly around a ship

Bompas & Parr’s team spreading their green jelly installation around the base of ss Great Britain (c) ss Great Britain

We also have a wonderful video of the jelly being installed and glimmering eerily in the darkness – if you’re in Bristol and you haven’t witnessed this incredible sight, head down there to discover this unique spectacle tonight!

Friday morning kicked off with our lovely festival ambassador Lauren Laverne enthusing about Museums at Night on the Radio 5 Live breakfast show. The station has a large and enthusiastic audience, and within minutes of Lauren’s talk  hundreds of people were tweeting about the festival and coming to the Museums at Night website to look for events!

Lauren also interviewed the indie band Django Django (who played at National Museum of Scotland’s sold-out Museums at Night event) on her BBC 6 Music show, and again sent a new audience to find out more about the festival!

Culture24 CEO Jane Finnis spoke on Gaby Roslin’s show on BBC Radio London early in the morning, and also appeared on the Review Show with Kirsty Wark in the evening, discussing Museums at Night. You can watch the Review Show here for the next 7 days: Jane’s segment begins around 38:30 minutes in.

Museums at Night Campaigns Manager Nick Stockman was interviewed by a Polish radio station, and headed up to Liverpool to speak at the launch of Light Night - here’s his review of Polly Morgan’s taxidermy performance at the Victoria Gallery & Museum.

I was interviewed by Splash FM yesterday, and BBC Radio Sussex at the shocking hour of 6:40 this morning, wrote about Museums at Night for the DCMS blog, and last night visited Mind the Map at London Transport Museum.

Arts writer Mark Sheerin visited the Alfred Wallis exhibition at Kettle’s Yard in Cambridge, while Culture24 reporter Ben Miller tweeted his photographs from Museums at Night events at 4 Oxford museums.

The rest of Team Culture24 are out at Museums at Night events tonight and tomorrow too – so why not join them? Find events in your area at www.museumsatnight.org.uk.