Launch: MDNW Contemporary Collecting Toolkit

Collecting contemporary histories to ensure collections are up to date and relevant can be a major task for museums. For some, contemporary collecting is high on the agenda, but for others it’s a new approach and one that may feel overwhelming at first.

To help, MDNW commissioned independent curator Jen Kavanagh to develop a Contemporary Collecting Toolkit.

This toolkit is an introduction to contemporary collecting, for museum staff and volunteers who don’t have direct experience of acquiring recent material and who want to understand the basics. It aims to provide advice and guidance on how to undertake contemporary collecting projects, outlining some of the practical considerations that need to be made and showcasing examples from museums.


We will be adding new case studies to the toolkit next year from three museums in the North West that took part in our Contemporary Collecting Pilot Programme in 2018-19.

We hope the toolkit provides some inspiration and support for those looking at collecting projects. To download your copy click this link: MDNW_ContemporaryCollectingToolkit_July2019

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