Hull of a House

Meet the Staff: Naomi

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Welcome to the first edition of our Meet the Staff series!  Today you’ll meet our Exhibit Coordinator, Naomi, a talented new addition to the staff.  What did we ever do without her??

Naomi, hard at work

How would you describe your work at the Hull-House Museum?
I am the exhibition coordinator at the museum, so I get to manage the whole production of the exhibition that is slated to open a year from now.

What are you currently working on for the new exhibit at Hull-House?
Currently I’m trying to track down some interesting artifacts related to Grace and Edith Abbott, two sisters who spent about 10 years living and working at Hull-House. But I’m also working on about 7 or 8 other projects at the same time. I’m also spending a little time every day searching the collection database so I can get to know what we have tucked away in all our various storage areas.

What do you like about this work?
I like the fact that I get to work on several projects at once; some of it is intellectual and research-based and some of it is organizational and busy work. It’s a great mix.

What are the challenges?
Even though I like how varied my role is at the museum, it can be a challenge to switch gears between busy work and research. And we have a very chatty and lively office (which I love!) but it can also make it that much harder to delve into the archives or get all that reading done. Another hard thing is having to nag people to get stuff done. No one likes to be a nag, but someone has to do it.

What is your favorite artifact in the museum?
Right now I’m completely enmeshed in the vast photography collection. The
images in the holdings of the museum and the UIC Special Collections are
priceless. It’s unfortunate that we can’t exhibit more of them.

What do you do when you aren’t hard at work?
I’m a bit of a homebody, so I spend time there, cooking, hanging out with my husband, doing crossword puzzles, playing scrabble, and lots of reading. But we also go out and spend lots of time with family and friends… which usually involves eating.

What is your all-time favorite museum?
The Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City. It’s where I became an
art historian.

If you were a Hull-House resident, who would you be?
I don’t know yet, but I’m sure by the time this exhibit is installed I will.

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