MA Electronic Communication & Publishing, University College London
Recovery Project Lead, Archives & Collections
• 0141 566 1484
Polly studied languages as an undergraduate and completed her Masters at the School of Library, Archive & Information Science, UCL in 2000. Since then Polly has worked in the arts sector, promoting the access and use of art and archive collections for teaching, learning and research, both to academic and general audiences. She was a founder member of the Visual Arts Data Service http://www.vads.ac.uk/, becoming Director in 2007; she established an Image Bank and then the Digitisation Unit for the University for the Creative Arts in 2009 and 2011 respectively, and then moved to Tate in 2012 to manage the Transforming Tate Britain: Archives & Access project http://www.tate.org.uk/art/archive until February 2015.
Polly is now Project Lead for the Archives & Collections Recovery Project at GSA, following the devastating fire in May 2014. During the next three years a programme of conservation, digitisation, collection management and collection development work will take place to stabilise and rebuild GSA’s Archive & Collection, and to enable access and engagement therewith. Please contact Polly if you have any questions relating to this work.
BDes (Hons) Jewellery and Metal Design, Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art
Archives and Collections Assistant
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Cat graduated from Jewellery and Metal Design at Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art in 2013. During two years of designing and making jewellery alongside running craft classes in Paperchase Glasgow, she became interested in the relationship between archives and creative practice. This lead to her volunteering for both North Lanarkshire Archives and The Glasgow School of Art Archives and Collections.
Cat then undertook a Skills for the Future traineeship with Glasgow City Archives and The Glasgow School of Art Archives and Collections as part of Scottish Council on Archives’ Opening Up Scotland’s Archives project. Her project focused on outreach and community engagement and looking at ways of bringing alternative audiences into archive repositories. As part of this, she developed a workshop for art students inviting them to use the archive collections as inspiration for a creative project.
Cat now works alongside Jennifer Lightbody as Archives and Collections Assistant. She is the first point of contact for visitors and enquirers interested in the rich and diverse historical material we hold. She is also responsible for organising and hosting the majority of our group study visits from both GSA students and external groups. Please contact Cat if you have any questions about our holdings, GSA’s previous staff and students or to book a group visit.
MA (Hons) History of Art and Slavonic Studies, The University of Glasgow
Collections Development Officer
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Michelle graduated with a first class honours degree in History of Art and Slavonic Studies from The University of Glasgow in 2006. With a personal interest in Art Nouveau and Glasgow Style architecture, furniture and interiors, she joined The Glasgow School of Art as Archives and Collections Assistant in 2012, having previously worked in various museum and archive roles at The National Trust for Scotland and The University of Glasgow, one of which was as Project Assistant for the Stoddard-Templeton Corporate and Design Archive, the archive of one of the world’s most successful carpet manufacturers. In 2014, as Archives and Collections Project Officer, she developed and managed a project to create an online catalogue for GSA’s archives and collections.
A major fire in the School’s Mackintosh Building in May 2014 resulted in the loss of parts of the School’s built heritage, art and furniture holdings and damage to some of its paper based archives and textile collections. During the next three years a programme of collections management and collection development work will take place to stabilise and rebuild GSA’s Archives and Collections. As Collections Development Officer for GSA’s recovery project, Michelle’s role is to oversee the cataloguing, documentation, digitisation, conservation and repackaging of GSA’s holdings. As part of the project she will also examine existing collections management processes and implement new procedures where necessary.
Michelle also manages a team of volunteers who support associated activities and supervises the A&C’s student work placements and internships. Please get in touch with her if you are interested in volunteering or undertaking a work placement at The Glasgow School of Art’s Archives and Collections.
MSc Information Management and Preservation, University of Glasgow
MSci (Hons) Mathematics and Physics, University of Glasgow
Archives and Collections Assistant
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Jennifer graduated from the University of Glasgow in 1998. She spent nearly 18 years working as an engineer in the defence industry, carrying out both technical and project management work in the design of quiet ships, before making a career change into archiving.
She undertook a year’s Skills for the Future traineeship in 2016-17, spending six months at each of Glasgow City Archives and GSA Archives, focussing on outreach and engagement. She then returned to study for an MSc at University of Glasgow, where her dissertation addressed how to promote shipbuilding collections in Scotland.
As Archives and Collections Assistant until December 2019, Jennifer is based in the reading room hosting visitors and groups with Cat, but also focusses on processing image requests and promoting the collections via social media (Instagram, Twitter and Facebook). In addition, she has been involved in the textile digitisation project, working with student volunteers rolling the textiles after photography. You can keep up to date with what Jennifer is working on via our blog.
MSc Information Management & Preservation, University of Glasgow; PGDip Museum and Gallery Studies, University of St Andrews; BA (Hons) Fine Art, University of Wales, Aberystwyth
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Lucy graduated with an MSc in Information Management and Preservation from the University of Glasgow in 2015. Lucy has always had a keen interest in how collections can be used to inspire and create positive change, and has previously worked as an artist, and in museum and gallery education roles. Prior to her appointment as Documentation Assistant, she volunteered in several archives and worked as a community archivist in the Scottish Borders. Lucy has also been one of a team of volunteers working within GSA Archives and Collections, and her own creative practice has been influenced by her connection with the service.
As Documentation Assistant, Lucy will be working from 2018-2020 to ensure that GSA Archives and Collections are increasingly available to researchers in digitised format.
MA (Hons) MARM RMARA AFHEA
Archives and Collections Manager
• 0141 353 4592
Susannah manages the Archives and Collections service which comprises visitor services, collection management, and outreach & engagement work.
She studied History of Art at the University of Glasgow before completing a Masters in Archives and Records Management at the University of Liverpool. She is also a registered member of the Archives and Records Association and an Associate Fellow of the Higher Education Academy.
Susannah is particularly interested in the use of archives by creative practitioners and the role of historical sources in higher education. She has worked on a number of exhibitions, seminars and workshops relating to the School’s historical collections and has written articles for The Journal of the Scottish Records Association, The Journal of the Society of Archivists and the Art Libraries Journal.
Please contact Susannah if you would like to donate something to our archives, if you have an in-depth enquiry about GSA’s history, or if you are interested in working with our archives as part of a collaborative and/or creative project.