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Plates from the Queens Museum “Visible Storage” display of memorabilia from the 1939 and 1964 World’s Fairs

“objects produce knowledge and meaning both in and of the world” Geismar, 2018).

Museums are perfect sites for the production and display of collections. The objects in a given collection offer not only a visual way to learn about the world but are also, through their curatorial framing, a subjective representation of identity, culture and history.

The relationship between museums and collections should be carefully explored. Items in museum collections are usually ones of high value. While most of us get a chance to observe these items, only few can own them — an elite and exclusive class that gets to define cultural value. The museum setting, and the imagined setting of a private collection, create an aura around these material objects, seeding and stoking our desire for them. …


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