One of the great perks of this residency is coming into contact with the curators. They offer a wealth of expertise and knowledge that I couldn’t acquire in a lifetime. And the best part about the curators is the objects they have access to, physically and informationally.
Whilst preparing for my psychic workshop, I’ve had to rely on the curators to supply me with a list of objects under their care that answer my brief. One of the difficulties, and hence a limiting factor, in choosing the objects is that the psychic should ideally be able to touch the objects, i.e. make skin contact.
Psychometry, a term coined by Joseph Buchanan in 1842, means ‘reading objects by touch’. The effectiveness and accuracy of the reading, though not guaranteed, could be more easily achieved with contact between the psychic and the objects.
Naturally, this narrows the field somewhat in terms of the objects that would be available for the workshop, since they would have to be moved and handled.
In the past weeks I’ve had the priviledge of accessing the stores (the storage rooms where undisplayed objects are kept) in the company of the curators. I was able to see and sometimes even touch many things that the public may never get the chance to see. This was where, between the curators and I, we made decisions about objects that would be selected for ‘reading’.
Among the things selected were items of clothing – hats, gloves, a jacket, hair jewellery; handwritten letters; a lock of hair(!); playing cards; a child’s night cap and hanky; and wallpaper too. I can mention these objects here now because these items have already been ‘read’ in the last two workshops held here at the Museum (in case the sceptics out there decide to accuse me of giving the psychic a head start by talking about them before the workshop).
In the next few days I’ll endeavour to post on this blog, as much as I can, the results of the workshop and also my thoughts on how I hope to proceed from here. There is one more psychic workshop coming up, scheduled for the afternoon of Saturday July 4th. If you’re keen to come and watch and possibly try your hand at reading objects too, please come along. Sceptics are welcome.