Exhibitions are a unique, three-dimensional medium that engages the imagination. No two people experience an exhibition in exactly the same way. Exhibitions are more akin to theater than textbook. They demand something of the user, whether it is recalling a personal memory or experiencing the world through someone else’s eyes. Exhibitions can be magical, memorable and transformative. The best ones are those that invite us to discover something new about ourselves.
CB Services, LLC was established in 1998 to help museums create great exhibitions.
We identify content–the ideas, objects and images–that frame an exhibition and research the stories that make that content memorable. Then we create a narrative that ties the stories together and makes them meaningful. We use a systematic and deliberate approach to move from planning to implementation, making sure that decisions are based on visitor research and evaluation data.
In the early planning stages of a project, we work with clients to determine their goals and document their ideas in a statement of purpose. As the project progresses, we keep track of ideas, objects and images that support the narrative and offer strategies for involving the target audience in prototyping and evaluation. In the final stages of a project, we write exhibit text, manage its review and deliver it in a timely manner. Along the way we facilitate creative discussions, solve problems and build capacity within the organization to use exhibitions as a springboard to engage their community.
We work directly for museums, science centers, cultural organizations, corporations and government agencies to nurture and shape exhibition ideas. We also partner with design firms, architects, and media developers. We support our clients at all phases of a project, from developing early concepts to writing and editing final text. We tailor our approach and planning tools to suit the needs of our clients and their organizational culture.
Founder Carol Bossert is a museum professional with twenty-five years of working in and for cultural organizations. To date CB Services has worked with more than 40 organizations to plan and develop exhibitions, multimedia, outreach programs and graphic labels. We work nationally and internationally. Clients include the International Spy Museum, NASA Glenn Visitor Center at the Great Lakes Science Center, Nature Research Center at the North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences, and Yellowstone National Park, Prince Salman Science Oasis, and Shanghai Science Center.
I really enjoyed the professional relationship I developed working with Carol. Not only did she bring a breadth and depth of knowledge to our thinking about interpretive planning, she also had interesting and new ideas to share from across the museum field. Having a contractor that is looking at different types of museum and engagement strategies really helps to push current thinking, which is the greatest benefit of bringing in an innovative outside voice like Carol's. I look forward to our next opportunity to work together.Megan Woods | Director of Museum and Library Services at the Ohio History Center, Columbus, OH
Carol Bossert, as a knowledgeable museum professional with a penchant for accessible and lively communication, made the guest experience most enjoyable. The time sped by, as we explored familiar—and not so familiar—conversational paths.
Marsha Semmel | Independent Consultant and Senior Advisor, Noyce Leadership Institute Washington, DC
It's a pleasure to be interviewed by Carol for this radio show! Her questions and follow-up are insightful and encourage a presentation useful to the museum field. As I was just back from a presentation at the International Council of Museums Conference in Rio, we talked about trends in the international museum community. I forwarded a link to many of my colleagues and the feedback was wonderful. I heard back from senior museum staff from museums around the world, saying the program is useful, timely, and interesting.
Myriam Springuel | Springuel Consulting Sarasota, Florida
Whenever the topic is museums and their users, I always want to participate in good conversations. I think that everyone in museum work needs to learn the importance of dialogues and provocative questions. Museum experiences are always better when we can find the words to describe them, or when we have a great partner in conversation to help us to express something better together. Carol Bossert conducts smart radio conversations that allow participants to speak personally about professional values. The Museum Life is exploratory and unprecedented: it should become a new way for professionals to allow fresh thinking into their lives and new ideas into their work. Institutions and conferences usually do not make room for these kinds of conversations. The radio is a great place for thinking new thoughts together, and Carol Bossert is a fine person to think with.
David Carr | Conversations in Cultural Institutions Sandy Springs, Georgia
…you have also been amazing to work with – it was a real team effort and I so much appreciate your expertise, guidance and responsiveness, and also your calmness....
Jodi Condes | FHWA Turner-Fairbank Highway Research Center