A few weeks ago we took PreserveCast on the road, albeit only a few blocks, to visit a truly unique historic place, the American Visionary Art Museum. Nick sat down with AVAM's founder, Rebecca Hoffberger, in one of the museums several repurposed, historic buildings to discuss the history of the institution that houses the world's largest collection of 'outsider' or 'visionary' art. Nick and Rebecca covered a lot of topics, including the decision-making process that led Rebecca to locate in a campus of historic buildings in Baltimore city. Things may seem a little unorthodox, but that's what visionary art is all about on this episode of PreserveCast.
When is a building worth saving? This can be a controversial question, even among preservationists. Greg Galer, the Executive Director of the Boston Preservation Alliance, joined us on PreserveCast to share his perspective. Greg has worked to preserve many examples of mid-century modern ‘brutalist’ architecture, like Boston City Hall and the Boston Christian Science Center. Should exposed concrete structures be preserved the same as 19th century estates? A brutal question (and hard to answer too), but let’s talk about it on this week’s PreserveCast.
It may not come as a surprise that some historians and museum professionals are not always quick to adapt to change, but that’s only some of us. There are others out there, like today’s guest Frank Vagnone, who not only are capable of adapting, but thrive on inverting the status quo of museums and public history. Frank and I spoke about the book he co-authored, The Anarchist’s Guide to Historic House Museums, his position as the President and CEO of Old Salem, and examples of good ways for house museums to defy expectations. There's anarchy in the USA, the U.K., and beyond on this week's PreserveCast.
Editor's note: The music in the segment came from a 1994 recording of a Virginia Pow Wow, and included a traditional Eastern Woodlands and Iroqouis song/dance called Gadasjot.
How are battlefields preserved? Why are battlefields preserved? What should we do with a battlefield site once it is protected? These are all important questions, and we are fortunate to be joined by someone who can possibly provide the answers. Jim Lighthizer is the President of the Civil War Trust and an expert in battlefield preservation. Join Nick as Jim shares insight into how he maintains momentum at the head of the nations leading Civil War Battlefield Preservation Organization on this week's PreserveCast.
This episode is part of focus series on the history of the Antietam Battlefield.