Richard Martin Exhibition Awards recognize outstanding costume exhibitions presented by both small and large institutions. Award-winning exhibitions demonstrate excellence and innovation in the interpretation and presentation of costume, providing a transforming experience to both students of costume and the public. Up to two awards are given annually to exhibitions of differing sizes and funding. A representative of each award-winning exhibition is invited to speak at the CSA National Symposium the following year, and receives a certificate and a $500 honorarium, funded by the CSA Endowment, to help defray travel and symposium expenses.
Richard Martin Exhibition Awards, first given in 2002, are named for Richard Martin (1947-1999), curator of costumes at The Metropolitan Museum of Art and the Fashion Institute of Technology. An outstanding scholar, lecturer, author, and the curator of many critically acclaimed costume exhibitions, Richard Martin was a Fellow of the Costume Society of America, and served on its Board of Directors, as editor of CSA’s scholarly journal Dress, and as president of the Mid-Atlantic Region.
To be eligible for an award an exhibition must:be mounted at a museum, historical society, historic house, academic department within an institution of higher learning, or at a site where museum standards are applied
at least sixty percent of the objects on display must be costume
have at least one person on the exhibition team who is a CSA member
have been presented in the fifteen months prior to the January 31 entry deadline
not have received the award in the past three years
Completed entries must be postmarked by January 31, 2016.
The Costume Society of America recognizes that exhibition size is not necessarily an indicator of excellence. It also acknowledges that large institutions with large exhibition budgets may have an unfair advantage over smaller institutions with less funding. In order to balance competition between exhibitions of differing sizes and budgets, up to two Richard Martin Exhibition Awards may be given each year.
Exhibitions will be evaluated on:excellent and innovative exhibition concept and design
quality of research, scholarship, and interpretation presented in the exhibition
innovative, appropriate, and engaging use of objects, media, and design elements
adherence to good conservation standards for mounts, light levels, climate control, etc.
overall excellence, encompassing the ability to serve as a model for other exhibitions and to evoke a transformative response from viewers
Entrants will be notified of the results by March 15. Award results will be announced at the CSA National Symposium. A designated representative of each award-winning exhibition is invited present an overview of the exhibition at the following year’s CSA National Symposium, and will receive a $500 honorarium to help defray travel and symposium expenses.
Completed applications may be submitted electronically (as a single folder using a free large file sharing application such as Dropbox or Google Drive), on six (6) DVDs, or in six (6) clearly labeled 3-ring binders or folders. Electronic submissions are encouraged.
Questions? Contact Petra Slinkard, Richard Martin Exhibition Awards Committee Chair, at email@example.com.
Institution's name ______________________________________________________
Institution's address ____________________________________________________
Contact's name ________________________________________________________
Title _____________________________________ Telephone __________________
Name and title of CSA Member on the exhibition team
Exhibition title _________________________________________________________
Exhibition dates _______________________________________________________
Exhibition location _____________________________________________________
Include the following:
1) Briefly state the concept for the exhibition, including goals and expectations.
2) Briefly describe the institution that presented the costume exhibition. Include the annual budget for the institution, or if the institution is a museum, college, or university with many departments, the annual budget for the department that generated the exhibition.
3) Briefly outline the exhibition budget.
4) Briefly describe the physical exhibition space, and include a floor plan to scale.
5) Briefly detail the conservation methods used in the exhibition.
6) Provide a walk-through of the exhibition, including no more than 20 images or photographs that give a sense of the exhibition as a whole.
7) Provide label text, including all text if possible, but at least the major concept labels, subordinate labels, and several examples of object labels.
8) Include other material as desired, such as examples of catalogues, gallery guides, brochures, videos, or handouts, or information about related public programs and online content.
Submit the material electronically or submit six (6) copies, either as DVDs or in clearly labeled 3-ring binders or folders. If you want the binders returned, include six (6) self-addressed, pre-paid return envelopes, or for submissions from outside of the United States, UPS or Fed-Ex prepaid return envelopes.
Send electronic submissions to: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Send DVDs or hard copies to:
Petra Slinkard, Richard Martin Exhibition Awards Committee Chair
Chicago History Museum
1601 N. Clark Street
Chicago, IL 60614
Receipt of entries will be acknowledged within one week.