Welcome! Applicants for The University of Iowa Pentacrest Museums My Collections exhibition program should review the following prior to submission. 

  • What is My Collections?
    • My Collections is an ongoing educational exhibition program that invites the community to participate in exhibiting their own personal collections at the University of Iowa Pentacrest Museums. Any University student, faculty, or staff may participate.  My Collections features two unique collectors and their personal collection each fall and spring semester.  Personal collections will be mounted and displayed in secure exhibit cases at the Museum of Natural History. Additionally, collections will be featured in easily accessible virtual exhibits, online.

  • How does the Museum define a collection and how many objects does it take to be considered a collection?
    • A collection is a group of objects or materials that have been gathered and grouped to be seen or studied and kept together. A collection is determined and curated by the person who owns or is in care of them.  Typically, a minimum of three objects organized in a group together can be considered a collection.

    • When will selected collections go on view to the public? How long will my collection be on display?
      • Chosen collectors will coordinate with UIPM Education and Collections staff to arrange for their collection to go on display in the Museum for the length of 1 semester. The collection will be featured online and remain available and archived online for remote viewershipIf the physical collection needs to be taken down at an earlier date, the collector will arrange the schedule ahead of time with the Museum.

    • What kinds of collections will the Museum accept?
      • The Museum will accept most any type of collection that a collector may hold. This can range in theme and material.
      • The collection can come from any period of history, including but not limited to contemporary objects that have been collected in the past 5-10 years

    • What kinds of collections will the Museum not accept?
      • To ensure security and appropriateness of collection, the Museum will not accept collections of weapons or material of a sexual or derogatory nature. Collections that are of high monetary value will require further Museum review and consideration.

    • How will the museum choose collections for the My Collections exhibit?
      • A Museum committee made up of Pentacrest staff will review and select collections.

    • How will my collection be displayed?
      • Collections will be secured in wooden museum display cases with glass or plexiglass windows. The Museum will supply cloth backdrops and risers as necessary.
      • The display cases have interior LED lights.
      • Note: there will be no temperature or humidity control inside the display cases, but the cases are sealed to protect the contents from fluctuations in temperature and humidity in the room in which the display cases are located.
      • Collections will be made viewable online through our museum website.

    • If my collection is chosen, what happens next?
      • You will be notified that your collection has been selected by Museum staff.
      • Museum staff will contact you to discuss display ideas, collection curation layout, and how much of your collection will be featured.
      • You will provide Museum staff with a personal collection statement to be displayed with your collection. Museum staff may edit for clarity, grammar & length.
      • Museum staff will enter into a loan agreement with you and make arrangements to get your collection to the museum and back to you again.
      • Museum staff will arrange a separate schedule to interview you about the collection and work out a plan to promote your collection to the public. This includes the opportunity to share a bio and photo as part of promotion.

    • How and when do I bring my collection to the museum?
      • Museum staff will contact you to arrange a time and manner of conveying the collection to the museum.

    • How will the museum care for my collection?
      • Museum staff will handle your objects with care and according to professional object handling protocols.
      • Your objects will be secured in protective enclosures and locked rooms when they are not in the display cases.
      • Exhibition display cases protect objects from temperature and humidity fluctuations, and LED lights minimize the risk of objects fading.
      • Exhibit materials used in proximity to your collection objects will be inert, acid- and lignin-free, and deemed safe to use with museum objects.
      • Collection objects deemed too fragile for display will not be chosen.

    • If my collection is not chosen, what happens next?
      • You will be notified via email by Museum staff if your collection will not be selected or if it did not meet the requirements of collection submissions. As long as the collection meets requirements, the Museum will offer you the choice to resubmit your collection for the next round of applications.
    • How do I submit a personal collection for consideration?

    For additional questions, please contact Carolina Kaufman, Director of Education and Engagement at carolina-kaufman@uiowa.edu