Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Coiled Clay Art at Southwest HS

Today was the first day of the coiled clay art program at Southwest High School. This is the second half of the coiled clay art project grant from the Imperial Valley Community Foundation.

For the next eight weeks the SAVAPA Art Club will be working with clay and investigating the shapes and styles of ollas in the museum's collection.

Today we took examples of the ollas from the Hammond/Butts collection into the classroom. I think this was the first time, in a long time, that artifacts have been out of storage and into the classroom. They went over great!

The Hammond/Butts collection was given to the college after the passing of Otha and Geraldine Butts. The collection was donated by their children. Included in the collection are several ollas that have been painstakingly puzzled together from hundreds of shards. This collection is numbered 2006-1, which means it was the first collection accessioned in 2006. It was brought into the new museum from storage, but no one could find any paperwork for the collection. This changed when Brenda received a call from the Hammonds asking about the collection, then she called the museum. She was able to described the collection, and it matched perfectly - another puzzle solved.

In the past months the museum has received several calls from people asking what is being done with the collection they donated to the college. Right now, the priority at the museum is to re-curate and inventory all of our private collections. No one collection is a priority over others. But the process is extensive and requires more money and staff.

We can say this, we know what is happening with the Hammond/Butts collection. It was the first collection in twenty years to be taken into a classroom and used as a teaching aid. And the kids loved it!

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