We’re big fans of the recent museum challenges going down on Twitter. It all started during the COVID-19 pandemic shutdown, when most museums around the globe temporarily shuttered. The Yorkshire Museum in England started a Twitter hashtag challenge, asking other museums to share photos of items in their exhibits. Topics ranged from “creepiest object” to “best butt art.” As you can see, it’s riveting stuff.
York Museums Trust Online Collection/Edgar Degas
Now, in the “grand finale” #CuratorBattle, the Yorkshire Museum asked fellow museums to share their “Star Object.” What is the best or most unique thing each museum has to offer? Yorkshire started the hashtag with their own prized piece, the York Helmet. The 8th Century object is the most complete Anglo-Saxon helmet in all of Europe. Pretty neat!
IT’S THE #CURATORBATTLE GRAND FINALE! 💥— Yorkshire Museum (@YorkshireMuseum) July 24, 2020
⭐️ Today’s theme is #StarObject! ⭐️
Our star is the York Helmet. This 8th century object is the most finely constructed and complete Anglo-Saxon helmet in all of Europe! It was a status symbol worn by Northumbrian royalty!
BEAT THAT!💥 pic.twitter.com/gfVfiEQViR
But other museums were more than up for the challenge. The State Museum of Fine Arts in Moscow, for example, shared their prized item: The famous painting “Blue Dancers” by Edgar Degas.
— Пушкинский музей (@theartsmuseum) July 24, 2020
The Northern Archaeological Exhibit shared their own #StarObject, an intact ovoid flask found in a 4th Century coffin.
Fill your cup with this - an intact ovoid glass flask found in the coffin of an adult male dated to the 4th century. This glass flask is a rare find in Britain! And in such pristine condition, it looks like we could’ve bought it from Ikea 😋— Northern Archaeological Associates (@NAAheritage) July 24, 2020
#CURATORBATTLE #starobject ⭐️ pic.twitter.com/5evlgtsOgx
The Perth Museum & Art Gallery in Australia offered a pretty rad candidate: a 4.5 billion-year-old meteorite. Most impressive!
For today’s #StarObject themed #CURATORBATTLE Grand Finale:— Culture Perth & Kinross Museums (@CPKMuseums) July 24, 2020
✨We've chosen our #StarObject from the stars!✨
This 4.5 billion year old Strathmore meteorite travelled 200 million miles from the asteroid belt, just to be part of the collection. pic.twitter.com/WAczSf1Q47
Another most impressive entry? Leeds University Library Galleries offered their #StarObject and it might just take the take. They’re home to the “Holy Grail” of book collecting, William Shakespeare’s four folios.
One of the most important books in the history of English Literature. Actually, not just the one. All four. That’s right, we have the holy grail of book collecting. All four of Shakespeare’s Folios. #sorrynotsorry for bringing out the big guns 💁♀#CURATORBATTLE #StarObject pic.twitter.com/NPORRq1z87
— Leeds Lib Galleries (@LULGalleries) July 24, 2020
Oh and don’t worry. Things are still getting weird in this challenge. The Grant Museum of Zoology in London shared what might be the most bizarre thing we’ve ever seen: a jar of moles?
Ladies and gentlemen, let us present to you the one and only JAR OF MOLES. So iconic it does its own interviews and gets its own fan mail. https://t.co/3780yPyvG0#CURATORBATTLE #StarObject pic.twitter.com/oTi9iHWRgE
— Grant Museum of Zoology (@GrantMuseum) July 24, 2020
Head over to the #CuratorBattle and #StarObject hashtags on Twitter to see more of what these amazing museums have to offer. You won’t be disappointed! We just hope they continue on with these battles in some way or another—they’re just a salve in these challenging times.
Featured Image: York Museums Trust Online Collection/Edgar Degas