Gustav — Levees Holding

Apologies for the light posting in recent days. I was in a hurry to pack up some clothes and head out of New Orleans. I’m safe in Austin Texas, watching and reading the Times-Picayune coverage of the storm. Things appear to be in flux at the moment. There are scattered reports of flooding in the Lower 9th Ward, but it looks like the levees are holding so far.

Driving West on I-10 on Saturday I saw hundreds of buses and ambulances coming in to get folks out of the path of the storm. The silver lining may be that people were able to get out of the area in time.

One issue during Katrina and during this storm is how to protect works of art during these disasters. I noted with great interest the forthcoming ICOM/ICMAH annual conference on “Museums and Disasters” which is scheduled to take place Nov. 12th – 16th 2008 in New Orleans. The scheduled presenters re seeming to take an interesting approach — by looking at how to present disasters as the subject of exhibition, but also how to protect museum collections during disasters. I had never considered before what the art museums in New Orleans (and elsewhere) do with their works of art to protec them during storms and natural disasters.

Hopefully I can shuffle my teaching duties to be able to attend most of these events in a couple of months. I’m also eager to get back to work at Loyola as soon as I can, but I did check out a big box of art law and contract law treatises to get to work on a new article this week.

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