Below are a few frequently asked questions regarding the Voices and Votes: Democracy in America traveling exhibition including eligibility and host site requirements. If you have any other questions not listed below, please email firstname.lastname@example.org or call the MANY office at 518-273-3400.
1. How large is this exhibition and how much space is required?
The Voices and Votes exhibition consists of 6 free-standing kiosks. The exhibition is approximately 700 square feet and you will need a minimum ceiling height of 8 feet to install the exhibition. Click here to learn more about size and space requirements.
Six stand-alone sections of sintra panels over a wielded aluminum structure with exhibition elements including: an audio box, 4 televisions, 3 touchscreen monitors, 3 flipbooks, approximately 14 object cases, 3 mechanical interactives, and a companion educational traveling trunk for use near the exhibition or in other venues. Host sites are required to provide extension cords for audio visual elements.
2. Does the exhibition space need to be climate controlled?
Your space does not need to be climate-controlled, but does need to be clean, cool (below 75 degrees F), and dry with limited direct sunlight.
3. How will this exhibition be delivered? Are their additional storage requirements?
4. Will there be any training provided on how to build and pack up the exhibition?
Voices and Votes packs in 16 crates. The crates are all on wheels, roll easily and they are all designed to fit through a single doorway. When packed, the crates weigh between 150 and 350 pounds. You will need to store the crates while the exhibition is installed. Storage can be either on-site or off and must be approximately 200 square feet, cool, dry, and clean. Crates may be stacked once they are empty.
MANY staff will organize the exhibition travel, and help each museum plan, implement, and evaluate the exhibitions and interpretive programs.
Selected participants will be required to attend an on-site training at the first host site in March 2024. This training will be lead by Smithsonian Traveling Exhibition Services staff and will cover building the exhibition, technology, and review important set up and storage
5. If selected, what resources will be provided to us?
Smithsonian resources available to the twelve museums will include digital learning curricula, preformatted press kits, and other capacity building tools.
6. Are we required to create an accompanying exhibition in addition to the Voices and Votes exhibition?
Yes, participating museums must produce a small (12-20 objects) exhibition drawn from their own collection that relates to their community’s role in the development and advancement of Democracy in America and tells the story of how people in their community created positive change for our nation. It may also relate to the Voices and Votes exhibition by exploring one or more of the exhibition themes.
The local exhibitions may be installed in the museum, or in a community partner space like a library or school, or alternatively the Voices and Votes exhibition could be installed in a community partner space and the local exhibition could be installed in the museum.
7. What is the financial commitment for our museum?
8. Can we charge admission toVoices and Votes?
Although MANY will continue to raise funds to offset the cost of the exhibition travel, marketing, and public programs, by submitting this application, the museum commits to contributing $4,000 to the project which includes the cost of shipping the exhibition to your site. These funds will not be due until the exhibition is delivered to your site.
A special entrance fee just for the exhibition is generally not allowed, but if your museum or historic site normally charges an entrance admission fee, that is OK and you can continue to charge that whilst your museum/historic site hosts Voices and Votes.
9. How can we learn more about MANY's National Endowment for the Humanities grant application for "A New Agora for New York: Museums as Spaces for Democracy" humanities discussion programs?
If funded (notification April 2023) the NEH will support:
- a MANY Project Fellow to assist with exhibition and program planning and implementation
- Access to ten project scholars whose work closely aligns with project content and goals to help museums plan and implement programs and exhibitions
- Access to the AASLH’s Vital Resources package
- Honoraria, transportation and per diem for two planning and training symposia
- Community Conversation Programs and staff training in conducting Community Conversation humanities discussion programs led by Humanities NY staff
- Teacher workshops and training in conducting teacher workshops led by the staff of the New York State Museum
- A public lecture by a project scholar
- and Gathering and sharing community oral histories using the OurStoryBridge platform.
Click here to read our Nature of Request to the NEH