University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology

Ringo’s Newest Production


By: Alyssa Velazquez

September 18, 2014

The work in the Penn Museum Archives never ends. The backlog resists attempts at taming it. The archives is happy to have a number of interns and volunteers who are willing to help organize, catalog, and preserve the documents, drawings, and photographs in the collections. Alyssa Velazquez is one such intern, who is presently reorganizing the storage of the old glass plate negatives. The Museum has at least 30,000 glass plates, in sizes ranging from 3×4 inches to 11×14 inches. Many of these were originally transported into the field, were shot and developed there, and were then brought back to the Museum. Others were taken in the Museum’s photo studio, which was established by at least 1902. The Adventures of Ringo and Sobek is a social science satire centered around the Museum’s old records, surroundings, and areas of study.

In The Continuing Adventures of Ringo and Sobek:

Sobek,

Some of the vermin have begun to talk.
Mosquitoes are thinning out;
Ants are abandoning their hilled houses;
Flies, always buzzing about their personal business, are dwindling;
And bees- industrious laborers- no longer swarm into regimented formations.
There won’t be any left of us if we continue at this rate.
A counter measure must be crafted-
A cease and desist blockbuster.

We shall start with,
A catchy digitization.
Interactive traps that suspend our classroom in cyber space-
Above textbooks or critical thinking;
Our space: the architecture of a wireless next generation.
What this may lack in legitimacy, we will most assuredly make up for in scale.
Reconstruction is unavoidable.

The roof necessitates dissembling for the laser light show,
Artifacts will undoubtedly be laid off,
Replaced by more interactive prop pieces.
And the Middle East’s exhibition hall wall requires bulldozing, so as to fit the simulator.
It’s true to life depictions have a museum enhancement guarantee.

We need to bigger the bill, so as to heighten the return.
The investment to our survival: sensationalism;
Just the right IOU for lingering interest problems.
Relevancy and authenticity shall no longer hang in the balance of what: “we think.”
Under this new age-
Public interest Totalitarianism-
Accessible elements must be provided for so as to ensure continued foot traffic.

Our first production?
Return of The Raiders.
After a brief word from our sponsors within the simulator,
Visitors shall emerge into a dystopian exhibit hall that is adorned with a Leondaro Da Vinci and Van Gough consumed in a lingering inferno.
À la mode old men in an otherwise destroyed classicism.
Confronted with droids hovering in a cross-galactic battle with pint-sized wizards,
Guests are meant to feel that they’re at the precipice of significance.
At which point, through the use of telescreens, we steer them to their only mode of transportation:
A time-beaten yellow submarine;
Piloted by our own Dr. Jones.
After an annotated underwater archaeological pillage, our company still infused with the glitter of piracy,
By way of the subterranean aquarium,
Complete their adventure in the gift shop.

What say you Sobek?
What are your opinions on my own force of creation?
Yes-you are very right my insightful friend-
I must included a dinosaur fossil,
For the sake of authenticity.

Raiders


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