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7 Last of the few

During my early days at the ROM there were 42 curators working at the museum. With the wealth of specimens and information residing in our collections, there was so much to be learned and told about them.


The outlets for information ranged from scholarly publications, to the ROM’s own popular magazine, Rotunda. There was also the media, where curators could intrigue listeners and viewers with their stories; I was a frequent guest on radio and TV.


As for the collections themselves, new displays and new galleries were being opened, to entice visitors to come and see the ROM’s treasures.


Having so much happening required more curators. Just before my retirement, the number of curators had risen to 52. There was also a visible presence of security guards in the public galleries, protecting vulnerable objects on display, and helping visitors gain most from their museum visit.


Jump forward to the present and the number of curators has plummeted to 16. There are also fewer guards in the galleries. What has happened to the ROM I used to know, and how did this come about?


I did not discover the magnitude of the problem, or of some of the disturbing things that have happened, until last autumn. And most of what I know today was discovered during the first few months of 2023.



Link to ROM listing of staff, showing curators: https://www.rom.on.ca/en/collections-research/rom-staff

(Some of the curators listed have already retired, and three are new art curators)


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