THE COLLECTION SPEAKS is an audio tour and curatorial installation created for the 30th anniversary of the Berman Museum at Ursinus College.

 

From the 8000 artworks and artifacts in the museum’s eclectic collection, I selected 30 pieces. Some are by signature artists in the collection, while others are by anonymous craftspeople. I also included two things of my own that I found buried in my backyard in Michigan. 

 

The modernist bronze figure, the Victorian bathing suit, the painted egg—what do they say to us (and each other) when they venture from the quiet hibernation of the storage vault? They carry with them so many questions and clues about our impulse to collect and preserve, and our attempt to imagine a past and future that inevitably eludes us.

— Stephanie Rowden

STEPHANIE ROWDEN is a sound artist whose work encompasses installation, public art and radio documentary. She is an Associate Professor at the Stamps School of Art & Design at the University of Michigan. More about The Collection Speaks and The Berman Museum can be found here.

 

The audio tour includes the voices of Nancy Berman, the daughter of museum founders Philip and Muriel Berman; Deborah Barkun, art historian and professor at Ursinus College; William Earle Williams, photographer and professor at Haverford College, and Lisa Minardi, decorative arts historian and director of Historic Trappe.

MUSIC CREDITS 

Andrew Bishop: music direction

Jacob Warren: bass

Grant Flick: violin, nyckelharpa

Jeremy Edwards: music engineer

Comments or questions about the audio tour: thecollectionspeaks@gmail.com