With ‘Padua and its Jewellery‘ [“Gioielli d’Autore. Padova e la Scuola dell’oro – Italian Contemporary Jewellery. Padua and its Jewellery School“] currently showing, and the previous coup of hosting the ‘Schmuck 2009‘ exhibition, RMIT Gallery has shown some significant and important jewellery exhibitions in recent years (not to mention the other art forms).
However, I’ve been thinking that they may not be making the most of these wonderful opportunities.
My memory of ‘Schmuck 2009‘ was that it wasn’t well advertised very much ahead of time. My thoughts are that this magnificent exhibition would have taken at the very least months to organise, and of course months ahead of time. If there had been more publicity starting when the agreement had been made (especially within the tight jewellery community) then I am certain there would have been more visitors able to make plans – especially those interstate (as Melbourne was the only Australian show) and also those in New Zealand.
Further, my recollections of the most recent exhibition is that this too wasn’t very well publicised ahead of time either. Checking my calendar posts, it seems that I didn’t even know about it when I wrote the June 2011 sneak peek (though of course I’m not suggesting I’m so important I should know about these things, nor that I am well-read enough to know all that’s happening!).
There is a genuinely passionate community who will travel for important shows – the more notice they have to plan, the more visitors will come.
Alongside better forward-warning for jewellery-lovers [and it may not be my place to make such suggestions] I do have another important idea… I feel the RMIT Gallery website could certainly do with a redesign. Some points:
- when I initially wrote the June 2011 sneak peek post, I had obtained the information from a subscriber email and there wasn’t anything on their website at the time; so the website should at the very least be up-to-date with the subscriber emails
- on the gallery site is an image with the exhibition dates, as well as details of public program; however the only detailed exhibition information is in a ‘news’ item [link; to the right of the page] and not linked to the exhibition image
- the ‘exhibition’ link on the left-hand-margin takes you to a page that is out of date [link] and doesn’t therefore even mention the jewellery exhibition
- even more confusing – when you click on the Exhibition Program link on the About RMIT Gallery page, it sends you to a page that is from 2009 [link]!
- the Public Program page is also out of date (up to 16th March 2011)
- when this is the first and only ‘official’ page for the RMIT Gallery, my thoughts are that this just isn’t enough; the first four are from RMIT.edu.au (with others), the second unique one is a static page, the third unique page is from Artabase(but going to this link shows it’s out of date too, with the most recent exhibition link from Sep10, and the ‘currently on’ ends up returning with a message that ‘no exhibitions match the criteria’) … mmm …
I do understand that the RMIT Gallery is part of a university, and it is well-known that funding isn’t just lying around! And I believe many volunteers help out at the gallery, and as such there probably isn’t a lot of time nor funding nor expertise for a website / page overhaul… though I would think that the investment would be really worth it, especially if combined with a future-focussed targeted marketing to bring in more visitors.
I’m not singling out RMIT Gallery as a poor example, for there are many many sites that aren’t as good as they could be … however for the magnificent exhibitions the gallery is able to host, it would be of such great benefit if the website were optimised for web-savvy searchers and jewellery lovers.
Any other thoughts?