Linking Natural Science Collections in Wales student project
September 22, 2015

We’ve been lucky to have help from Sarah Matthews over the summer months and Sarah is continuing to volunteer for the project.  Sarah has helped a lot with the preparations for our exhibition ‘Stuffed, Pickled & Pinned; 50 Wonders of Nature in Welsh Museums’, which launches at Powysland Museum this October. Thanks Sarah!

“My name is Sarah Matthews. I have a BSc in Geology from Washington State University and a Foundational Certificate in Botanical Illustration from the School of Botanical Art and Illustration in Denver, Colorado. Currently I am on work placement for my Master’s in Museum Studies from the University of Leicester. I have been working with Sarah Daly on the travelling exhibition “Stuffed, Pickled & Pinned: 50 Wonders of Nature in Welsh Museums” (“Gwych a Gwallgof: 50 o Ryfedodau Natur Amgueddfeydd Cymru”).
“For my placement, I have been doing a variety of tasks. For example, office and housekeeping tasks to research and illustration. An example of the office tasks is e-mailing people to acquire peripheral but necessary information about this traveling exhibition – such as collecting valuations, exhibition space size, additional information on the items. The search for pertinent information has taken me to the Nantgarw facility, where I have measured objects, which will be included in the exhibition.


“I have done research on all the objects going into the exhibition. This involved collecting information from the museums, doing my own research, and relying on knowledge I have from my experience. A scientific illustration task I’ve done is to recreate a geologic map showing Snowdonia and the surrounding area during the late Ordovician (c. 447 million years ago). I have begun work on learning resources for children in Key Stage 2, and am looking forward to doing the illustrations on those.

“In addition to this, I have been collating data from the participating museums into spreadsheets which will go online to the People’s Collection Wales’ website this autumn. Since these are for public consumption, this task involves removing sensitive data, and data that would be uninteresting or meaningless to people not involve with the project.

“I love working on this project, because it gives me the opportunity to try many different activities. I love being able to incorporate both my background and love of science and art into one project.”