Currents of History

May 2, 2020

Currents of History

The students of Exhibiting History, a Museum Studies course in its inaugural semester, are pleased to present Currents of History: Movement, Memory, and Return which launches on May 1, 2020. Currents of History showcases eight riveting historical narratives curated by the course's eight students. The class, led by Professor Laura Schiavo, Associate Professor in Museum Studies at the George Washington University, intended to present their work in a physical exhibition at the Corcoran School of the Arts and Design's NEXT Exhibition before that showcase was canceled in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The final product for Exhibiting History has been created as a digital exhibition where the stories find a home on a beautifully-designed website with the support of design consultant Danielle Coates, a recent Exhibition Design graduate (‘19).


The stories included in this exhibition are organized thematically around ideas of agency, systematic displacement, and violence to provide rich historical insights on the movement and memory of narratives, people, and objects. From "Rice in Japanese Folk Culture" featured in the 1986 Festival of American Folklife, to archival photographs of Black women in precursors to women's studies programs, to a violin made by a Jewish Austrian refugee who escaped the Holocaust, the stories researched by the students of Exhibiting History are sure to generate dialogue in the digital realm about the movement of artefacts and changing narratives.


In addition to taking on the roles of historian and curator, the students were also responsible for specific project elements: project managers Julia Liden and Jonathan Edelman, audience evaluators Claire Vanderwood and Abigail Beatty, website design developers Emily Lew and Caroline Eisenhuth, and communications and publicity team Stella Smith and Sarah-Anne Gresham.


The Currents of History website will be live beginning on May 1, and will include over 25 images and contextual narratives prepared and written by the exhibition’s student curators.


This digital exhibition was made possible with the generous support of the Columbian College of Arts and Sciences, The George Washington University.

From the Exhibition

People, stories, and objects move. Sometimes this is an act of individual agency, sometimes it is the consequence of systematic displacement and violence. This exhibition recovers eight stories of movement, memory, and return...