This week I helped Shelia with selecting the upcoming book club books. She got an advanced copy of upcoming exhibitions for the next 2 years and we looked through them and tried to match book suggestions to future exhibitions. It was very cool looking up what the exhibitions may hold when they arrive at NOMA. I am sad that I am leaving and will have to miss the installation and preparation of the exhibits, but I know I will come back and see the finished product. Now that I know all of the work that goes into getting and installing an exhibition, I have a lot more respect for them and will come and enjoy them.
After I researched the exhibitions, Shelia and I went through and matched up the books we could from the suggestions to the exhibitions. After doing that we filled in the dates for those books and then filled in the extra months with other books Shelia wanted in the book discussions, but didn't really match up with any upcoming event. We then had to schedule them and put them in "the book". (Have ominous music play here). The schedule book for NOMA really isn't that bad. It is just very important to record things correctly in it so that double booking of the museum doesn't happen. Many events happen at NOMA whether it be a wedding, reception, anniversary, or other party and the staff has to know what is going on and when. I had to log all of the events for the library and put them in the notebook. Scheduling things in the library really isn't a big deal because if the library is needed, people usually talked to Shelia first as it is, and something can usually be worked out. However, it was interesting and important to see this notebook to understand how an institution like NOMA functions on a day to day basis.
Another topic that came up this week was library programming successes and failures. This week was the book discussion on the Ancestors of Congo Square book.
Last week Bill Fagaly came and did a talk and a walk through of the exhibit and it was quite fascinating and a lot of people showed up to hear him talk and to go through the exhibit with him. This week, hardly anyone showed up for the discussion on the V.S. Naipaul book. Shelia also did a talk at the Jefferson Parish library about the Masque of Africa and only 5 people showed up and none of them had read the book. Library programming is hit or miss like this. Sometimes you don't expect anyone to show up and everyone in the tri-state area comes, and when you are expecting people to show, then no one does. It doesn't mean give up, necessarily, it just means keep trying until you find something that fits.