I was in Sicily at the Greek Hellenistic site of Morgantina. I spent the first four weeks excavating along with mostly Princeton graduate students in Classics and Art and Archaeology departments, along with some other supervisors and volunteers from a few other universities. The site has been excavated mostly by Princeton and UVA. There were several trenches excavated, and I worked in a trench with either one or two other people. Excavation was the main emphasis, but I also helped the site architect with surveying. That mostly consisted of me holding the rod on the point for him to shoot to get elevations and other important markers, but I learned how to set up the machine and take points as well. Also, on site I washed pottery. Then in the fifth week, I spent half of this week working in the museum. The goal was to digitize the catalogue of finds, so I spent time photographing finds from previous excavations. Finally, the last week I worked with two Italian conservators and helped conserve and clean the finds from our excavation.
In the conservation photos: in the first I am using a q-tip dipped in solution to loosen up the dirt for me to scrape away. Basically, I am cleaning one of the finds. In the other two I am working in a trench. At the time I was using the brush to clean dirt off of one of the features, after we had been troweling. The other person in one of the pictures is Simon a graduate student in the classics department, we were working in that trench together.
This past summer I dove into the non-profit art world of New York City. I was worked at two very different institutions. The first was Art in General, a small non-profit contemporary gallery located right between Tribeca and Chinatown which assists artists with the production and presentation of new work. With no permanent collection, Art in General's focus is on new commissions from exciting contemporary artists and a residency program that works with artists from Eastern Europe. As a Gallery Assistant I was heavily involved in the day-to-day running of the gallery with the small six-person staff and other interns. I did curatorial research, worked for the development office, staffed exhibition openings and fundraising functions, and even set-up the entire office's new computer system. The highlight was without a doubt installing the main exhibition of the summer, AudInt: Dead Record Office, which was an immersive sound installation investigating the use of sound as a weapon. The installation, pitch black and navigable only with a flashlight, involved in part directional speakers mounted on a large derelict shack (the Dead Record Office), a floor covered in vinyl records and traversed by a wooden boardwalk, and a massive speaker which ranged from 100Hz to 20Hz, a frequency so low that the building would shake. The installation had me working hands-on with the artists, learning and understanding their vision for the exhibition, executing what they were looking for, and of course altering in when they changed their minds. I never thought I'd become such a carpenter, and it was only appropriate that in my last couple of days at Art in General I tore down the very exhibition that I had put up when I first arrived.