Cone Mills "The Fabric of Memory"
Greensboro, North Carolina
“The Fabric of Memory: The Cone Mill Villages” is housed inside the newly renovated Revolution Mill, one of the four factories that formed the Cone Mills of Greensboro, NC. The renovations, done by Belk Architecture and CT Wilson Construction, opened up the space and incorporated beautiful glass walls and natural light to the existing building. The mix of old and new architecture inspired us to use traditional and modern materials in the exhibit.
Collaboration With UNCG
The Design Dimension, Inc, team worked alongside a group of UNC Greensboro students in the Masters of Museum Studies program. Previous classes had collected images, artifacts and oral histories, while the Fall 2015 class was given the task of putting it all together. Throughout the process, the class kept a blog of their experience wrangling content and working back and forth with us on the design.
The Cone Mills exhibit is approached through the lens of someone who worked in the mills, lived in the mill villages, and/or was a part of the village community. Utilizing the high ceilings and glass walls, our bold imagery wraps the exhibit space, including a map of the mill in the context of greater Greensboro. We blended together oral histories, videos, artifacts, and images to tell stories on a large “S” shaped wall. While weaving through the narrative, visitors are asked to participate—casting votes, sharing memories while sitting at the “kitchen table” and listening to sounds of the busy factory floor.
This exhibit won a Leadership in History Award from the American Association for State and Local History (AASLH). The award, which recognizes achievement in the preservation and interpretation of state and local history was given to only 48 people, projects, exhibits or publications throughout the United States.