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DECAY: Time, Objects & Destruction

16 June 2017 - 29 October 2017

Title graphic for the Decay exhibition.

DECAY: Time, Objects & Destruction looked into the hidden world of decay in museums through this exhibition looking at the effects of time on objects. 

How can water destroy glass? Why do we not have much iron from the Iron Age? Why should I brush my teeth twice each day? 

The key is TIME. 

This exhibition was on display at Durham University’s Museum of Archaeology, in Palace Green Library. Created by the MA Museum and Artefact students ‘Decay: Time, Objects & Destruction’ showcased the impact of time on objects. 

Students installing the Decay exhibition.

DECAY explored the interesting effect that time can have on museum objects. The exhibition showcased the different stages of object decay by looking at various types of materials, including leather, glass and iron. Objects from the local area, integrated into the existing Living on the Hills gallery, showed the impact of decay and explain the scientific process behind it. 

DECAY also looked to the future to see what the effects of time are on modern artefacts – such as mobile phones, plastics and toys, to ask: what will these objects look like in 500 years?

Find out more:

Explore our Decay Exhibition Panels.

Poster from the Decay exhibition.