OMA Award Spotlight - Massillon Museum

On Sunday, April 14, the Ohio Museums Association held our Annual Awards dinner to recognize the winners of our 2018 Awards of Achievement and 2018 Visual Communication Awards, in conjunction with the 2019 Annual Conference in Akron.

In the beautiful Stan Hywet Hall & Gardens Manor House, OMA celebrated the outstanding achievement of Ohio museums in Visual Communications, individual and institutional achievement, and the tireless work museum professionals undertake to help to advance Ohio’s museum community both locally, and on a national level.

Over the next few weeks, we will be highlighting our 2018 OMA Award of Achievement winners with our OMA Award Spotlight. 

OMA Award Spotlight - Awards of Achievement

The Awards of Achievement are presented to reflect the outstanding quality and caliber of work by Ohio museums and their professionals in two categories: Institutional Achievement Awards and Individual Achievement Awards.

Nominations for these awards are incredibly detailed. This in-depth process helps to illustrate how these institutions and individuals have gone “above and beyond” the normal call of duty to support their institution, serve their public and advance the cause of the museum community.

Each year, the review panel is overwhelmed by the outstanding projects, innovative programming and dedication to our field as exhibited in each of the institutional and individual nominations. Congratulations again to each of our award winners! 

Today, we'll be featuring our winner for the 2018 award for Best Exhibition Catalog over $500,000.

Massillon Museum -  Moniker: Identity Lost and Found

Moniker: Identity Lost and Found was an unprecedented documentation and exploration of mark-making and monikers – grassroots movements which began in train yards in the mid-19th century and continue today.

Through this exhibition and catalog, the Massillon Museum investigated the deeper meaning of these unique symbols and words on the side of rail cars.

More than just a companion to the exhibition, the catalog works as a standalone piece with value for anyone interested in railroads, history, or ephemeral artworks.

Combining more than just essays and art, accessibility initiatives allowed audiences of all abilities to join the conversation, engaging with the content through smell, touch, and auditory elements.

The catalog clearly illustrates the value and importance of the easily overlooked moniker art form and captured the underlying ethos of the exhibition by blending academic underpinnings with relevant artistic details.

As one reviewer noted, “the exhibition and catalog brought the regularity of trains into the wondrous.” The public seemed to agree – within five days of being available to purchase, the catalog sold out.


Does your museum have a spectacular exhibit catalog planned for the 2019 season? Be sure to nominate it for the 2019 award for Best Exhibition Catalog! Learn more here.