As with most museums, space and programming constraints mean that only a fraction of objects can be on view at any one time. In this episode of the PEMcast, we throw open the doors of the James B. and Mary Lou Hawkes Collection Center to not only curators and visiting scholars, but also to Ben Miller, host of Curious Objects.
Artist in Persia (now Iran), shoe, 18th century, leather, metallic thread, glass beads, and wool. Gift of Captain Ichabod Nichols, 1799. E7414.
Ben Miller knows a lot about antiques. Not only does he now work in New York City as the director of research for S.J. Shrubsole, an antiques dealership specializing in English and American silver and jewelry, he’s also the host of the Curious Objects podcast produced by The Magazine Antiques. And in this episode of the PEMcast, he’s taking over, exploring our collection from his very curious vantage. You’ll hear him navigate time and the globe through highlights from our collection brought to Salem from around the world. Listen as our curators and experts to guide him, Ben wanders through our new 120,000 square foot state-of-the-art off-site Collection Center, generously supported by philanthropists, James B. and Mary Lou Hawkes. The Collection Center is also home to PEM’s Phillips Library, one of the oldest library collections in the country, which holds several hundred thousand volumes and one linear mile of archival material.
Karina Corrigan and Ben Miller examine a punchbowl for royalty. Photo by Kathy Tarantola/PEM.
In this two–part episode that we’ve turned into one, Ben embarks on an odyssey through our collection with access to Jingdezhen punch bowls, documents from the Salem Witch Trials, Christian Louboutins and a $2.1 million copy of the Declaration of Independence, as well as showy Persian shoes, and much, much more. Featuring Angela Segalla, director of the Collection Center, curators Karina Corrigan and Paula Richter, and Dan Lipcan, director of PEM’s Phillips Library.
Dan Lipcan and Ben Miller. Photo by Kathy Tarantola/PEM.
Angela Segalla and Ben Miller. Photo by Kathy Tarantola/PEM.
Thank you to Ben Miller and Sammy Dalati of Curious Objects and The Magazine Antiques. The PEMcast is produced by me, Dinah Cardin, and edited and mixed by Erika Sutter. It’s generously supported by the George S. Parker Fund. Enjoying the PEMcast? Share it online or tell a friend. For more episodes of the PEMcast, go to pem.org. Ideas or stories to share? Write to us at stories at pem.org. Till next time, stay curious.
TOP IMAGE: Artists in Jingdezhen, China, covered punch bowl and stand with views of the Chinese Pavilion at Drottningholm, 1762–3, porcelain. Peabody Essex Museum, museum purchase, made possibly by an anonymous donor, 1999. AE85710.A-C.