Articles

A Muse For a Museum Worker

In Hong Kong, Museums, Updates on April 1, 2011 by triotriotrio Tagged: , , , ,

Wedding Couple Being Groomed

Anonymous Wedding Couple Having Their Portrait Made

A Muse for a Museum Worker

More than one museum worker that I have spoken to has told me about walking through their own galleries in order to find some solace or meaning to their work. It is so easy when one hasn’t looked up from the monitor in several hours to stretch one’s legs, look at a new perspective or think about something other than the work at hand. A curator at the Isabella Steward Gardner Museum, my favorite museum in the world, once told me that it was policy that museum staff get out of their chairs once in awhile, walk through the museum and remember what it is that the museum is all about.

I have taken this to heart. But as I spend my current stint at the Hong Kong Maritime Museum, it is not the galleries that I head for when I need to recharge. I only need to walk out on to the museum’s walkway to once again feel refreshed. It is not art, history or science that I seek out but it is the hope that I can catch a glimpse of a new bride and groom.

I have been told that this phenomenon is not unique to Hong Kong; one may travel throughout Asia and experience this spectacle. When a couple gets married they sometimes have elaborate photos taken. These photos are often taken in prominent places so they convey a sense of time and space. Sometimes it is only the bride. Sometimes it is the couple. And sometimes these photos are an orchestra of family, bridesmaids, best men, and attendants.

And then there is the host of support people. The grip, light man, and photographer are all in tow as this moment is captured. At times there are scores of cars lined up on the road. In the backseat there are people doing make-up, painting nails and combing out big hairstyles. I once saw a couple with no less than 20 people to support the photographer.

The Hong Kong Maritime Museum is located at Murray House, a historic structure in Stanley Beach that is a haven for these types of photos.  Every day at lunch I spot these groups. And I am really sad when it is rainy and no one is out. It really has become a big part of my day. I guess everyone loves a bride and I am no exception. You can always tell that gleam of excitement in her eyes. Maybe it is the thought of the possibilities to come?

Weddings and museums have a long history with one another. Some museums depend on them for a significant portion of their earned revenue. But this is a new connection for me.

Advertisements

3 Responses to “A Muse For a Museum Worker”

  1. yeah.. that’s the tradition…

  2. Thank you for this post, I love hearing another museum worker’s perspective on wedding photography at their museum. A reminder of the beautiful places where we get to work. The photo you captured here is lovely, great perspective. It seems like there are more people contracted for these photo shoots than the one’s here in California. Also, thank you for sharing what the ISGM Curator made policy, I’ve made it a point since reading this to tour our galleries more often and it is refreshing to see the galleries through the visitors’ eyes again.

    • Thanks for your comment. SB is one of my favorite places on earth. I am sure there is a lot of refreshing things to recounter oneself with at your museum.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: