2019: Our Year In Pictures

Here are 12 highlights of our institution’s activities in 2019 – it’s been an eventful and productive year, and here’s to an even bigger and better 2020!


Sonic Boom at the V&A, London
We were honoured to be invited to participate in the Sonic Boom Friday Late at the Victoria and Albert Museum in February! Our Director gave a talk, then hosted visits to our museum inside one of the V&A galleries. A magical night! Many thanks to Eric de Visscher for inviting us to be a part of this massive night of museum sounds!

Curator Journal
Our institution received two publications in Curator Journal: one, a print article by our Director John Kannenberg concerning his curatorial practice of treating soundmarks as museum objects, plus an online interview for the journal’s website about the history and development of our museum!
Bournemouth Film School Workshops
We began an ongoing relationship with Bournemouth Film School, presenting a series of workshops on the curation of sounds as museum objects as well as leading campus soundwalks. We’re looking forward to the series planned for 2020!
Celebrating the Walkman and the Compact Cassette
Our Director celebrated the 40th anniversary of the Sony Walkman by appearing in an Associated Press Television News segment about the history of the Walkman.

The MOPS media blitz continued with an appearance in a WIRED UK article about the resurgence of the Compact Cassette.

MOPS Relaunch at the National Science and Media Museum
Our Walkman celebration continued at – and overlapped with – our Grand Re-Opening of our newly expanded Permanent Collection Galleries at the 40 Years of Portable Sound event at Bradford, UK’s National Science and Media Museum!

We unveiled our new Gallery Guide and Map, lectured on the history of the Walkman, and NSMM’s Annie Jamieson took visitors on a tour of some of the portable sound-related objects in the museum’s archives!

Our newly-relaunched museum now contains 317 sound objects displayed across 30 galleries, along with a new Video Gallery containing hours of footage related to the history of sound.

Anderson Acoustics
We began working with Anderson Acoustics, presenting MOPS at lunchtime learning events at their offices in Brighton & London!
Definition of Sound Art?
Our Director joined noted Chicago painter and radio artist Philip von Zweck to debate the definition of ‘Sound Art’ in the pages of Portable Gray, a journal published by the University of Chicago’s Gray Center for Arts and Inquiry.
The Keep Archives, Brighton
Our Acquisitions Team visited The Keep Archives in Brighton, where a team is currently working on the UK-wide Unlocking Our Sound Heritage digitisation project. Our team collected sounds of vintage audio equipment in operation, which have been added to our Permanent Collection. We also used footage we shot during this visit to create Gear Nerd ASMR!
Physical Object Acquisitions
We acquired some amazing new objects for our Physical Objects Collection, including (clockwise from top) The How And Why Wonder Book of Sound (1970); Notting Hill Sound Systems by Brian David Stevens (2014); a classic Bicycle/Clown Horn; and an Official Cassette Tape Rewinder from the UCLA Ethnomusicology Archive!
Social Media Shenanigans
On social media, we presented Soundscape™ Barbie® to the world; helped you figure out how to talk to your children about portable sound; found out what your first Compact Disc was; and provided a safe, easy, and fun way to determine the title of your Sound Studies thesis!
Patreon & The Gift Shop
We also took steps to begin finding financial support for our museum by starting a Patreon account; we’re incredibly thankful for our backers, but we still need more help! Please consider supporting us at any level – every little bit helps!

We also opened a new USA-based Gift Shop and added lots of new clothing designs to both our geographical Gift Shops!

We love our visitors!
As always, our primary focus was our visitors. We continued to welcome people to our museum, indoors and out, across multiple cities and countries this year – will you be on our visitors’ list next year? Book your own visit today!

Published by Dr John Kannenberg

John Kannenberg is an artistic researcher whose work investigates sounds as museological objects. Via an acoustemological approach, he considers the histories and cultures surrounding sounds, the technologies that generate or record them, and the auditors who hear or listen to them. He holds a PhD in sound & museums from the University of the Arts London, as well as a Master of Fine Arts in Studio Art degree and Graduate Certification in Museum Studies from the University of Michigan. He is Director and Chief Curator of The Museum of Portable Sound. Learn more about his work at johnkannenberg.com.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: