Session overview

Our first session focuses on the initial stages of planning for a special loan object display or exhibition, and how important research is to determine your plans. The panel will discuss, amongst other topics; ways to approach planning and research; why and how you choose a special loan object; and the impact the coronavirus pandemic has had on this early but crucial stage of a borrowing journey. We’ll be joined by professionals working across the UK museum and gallery sector, including a national art collection, a museum that explores the heritage and culture of rural Wales, a contemporary art gallery and a society that celebrates the work of an historic carver.

Session 1 on-demand

The panel

Assistant Curator, Ceredigion Museum

I am a curator at Ceredigion Museum working within an engaging and socially cohesive framework. We enjoy pushing the boundaries of traditional curation, particularly in regards to wellbeing and sustainability within the historical and cultural boundaries of the museum. I aim to curate spaces for reflection, and enjoy developing unusual forms of presentation and sites for curation. We work with artists collaboratively, and from the environment of our museum collections, whilst drawing in our audiences as active participants of the process.  Happy Museum have helped us transform the museum space and develop a more collaborative and inclusive approach. In 2019 we received a highly commended in the Museums + Heritage award 2020 for the temporary exhibition 'Sheep'.

Programme Director for the Grinling Gibbons Society

Hannah Phillip is the Programme Director for the Grinling Gibbons Tercentenary and Society, master-planning a festival, exhibition, education and events programme across 2021-22. Hannah is a consultant in the field of heritage development, programming and fundraising and has worked in museums for over 20 years. She started her career in Australia with the National Trust of SA where she was responsible for their flagship property, Ayers House, a colonial mansion in the heart of Adelaide. More recently she was Director of Fairfax House, a renowned Georgian townhouse in York, and over ten years raised the museum’s profile by curating a series of major exhibitions involving national loans. In 2017 she was responsible for fundraising and securing the King David Panel by Grinling Gibbons - his first-known work. As part of Grinling Gibbons 300 she is currently planning a major exhibition involving loans of objects from the UK and beyond.

Head of Exhibitions, The Lightbox

Peter Hall is Head of Exhibitions at The Lightbox, a position he has held since 2015. He first joined The Lightbox as Arts & Collections Officer when it opened in 2007 and has contributed to the organisation growing steadily in scope and ambition over that time. Recent Main Gallery exhibitions at The Lightbox include Raphael: Prince Albert’s Passion and David Hockney: Ways of Working (both 2020). Peter has curated Henry Moore: Sculpting from Nature (2017); Turner in Surrey (2018) and British Women in Photography (2019). He is developing a Bridget Riley exhibition, rescheduled for December 2021.

Director, Art Council Collection

Deborah Smith has worked as a curator for over 2 decades. Through exploring different strategies for collaboration and the presentation of interdisciplinary practices she has delivered exhibitions alongside large-scale commissions, residencies, conferences and publications, interwoven with programmes of learning, engagement and interpretation.

Projects have been developed in galleries and in the public realm with internationally respected organisations such as Hayward Touring, The New Art Gallery Walsall, Norfolk & Norwich Festival, Camden Arts Centre, Chapter, and Contemporary Art Society. Her work has included Curator, Arts Council Collection National Partners Programme at Birmingham Museums Trust and Head of Programmes (Interim) at the Serpentine Galleries.

Deborah worked with Arup (global company of engineers, architects and planners), with Invisible Dust, an organisation specialising in art and science, and currently curating the exhibition 'Human conditions of clay' with Chapter postponed to October 2021.

In September 2020 Smith was appointed Director of Arts Council Collection. In addition, she is an elected board member of IKT Association of Contemporary Art Curators (2017-2021), a steering group member of Intoarts (disability studio practice), a shadow board member of The Box, Plymouth, and on the Art Collection Committee at the University of Warwick.