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Brooklyn’s Finest: Bob Nardi

It’s time for second installment of Brooklyn’s Finest, where you can meet a different member of the Brooklyn Museum staff every month. Today we’ll meet Bob “Media Guru” Nardi, who works in our Technology department and produces the behind-the-scenes films available on our Web site, in addition to the media content found in our galleries.

If you’ve ever visited the Brooklyn Museum’s YouTube channel, you’ll see that Bob has quite a few fantastic videos under his belt. Although many of these films are brief, he actually spends countless hours filming and editing his footage to give you the perfect glimpse of special projects and events taking place at the Museum.

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Over the years, however, I’ve realized that getting to work might actually be the hardest part of Bob’s day. Though he’s lucky enough to drive to work, Bob has story after story about the traffic jams, gridlocks, and bottlenecks that he has to endure on a daily basis as he makes his way here from Sunnyside, Queens. Punctuality may not be a guarantee, but at least he always keeps Shelley informed on his progress:

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Lucky for us, even after waging war with the Kosciuszko Bridge for the last seven years, Bob still enjoys coming to the Museum to exercise his cinematic creativity. As you may expect, this creativity spills over into his personal life too, but I’ll let him tell you more about that:

Where are you originally from?

Flushing, Queens

What do you do here?

I film, shoot, record, and edit the Brooklyn Museum’s media content. Most of this content can be found on the Web or on kiosks that are located throughout the Museum. I’m also in charge of setting up and maintaining all of the computer and iPod kiosks throughout the Museum and in the galleries. I work closely with the designers, registrars, artists, carpenters, electricians, and painters.

What was your craziest filming experience?

Before © MURAKAMI opened we did a time lapse video of the installation of Mr. Pointy, which took two full days of filming. The first day I had to stand on the roof of an apartment building across from the Museum on Eastern Parkway. I had to talk to the landlord and convince him to let me run power up to the roof…where I stayed for the next 6 hours. It was 40 degrees and so windy and I froze my butt off. At least I had an intern up there with me (she wanted to leave but I made her stay so I wasn’t the only one suffering. Sorry, Francesca.).

The most interesting filming experience I had here happened just a couple of weeks ago when I filmed the conservators rewrapping the “Anonymous Man” mummy. It took 4 days to film, and it was very interesting and extremely tiring. I’ll never forget the smell of that mummy.

What was your last job before the Museum?

I was a nurse at an animal hospital. I was doing that to make a living while I was in school in Boston.

What did you go to school for?

I went to the Berkelee College of Music for film scoring and music synthesis.

Sounds like a not-so-hidden talent…

Yea, I try to keep up with my music when I’m not at the Museum. I’ve done a couple of solo acoustic shows and am working on starting two bands this summer.

I’m also going to be put out some of my own films soon, and they’ll feature my original music.

What did you want to be when you grew up?

I actually wanted to be an entomologist. Is that what it’s called? It’s a scientist who studies insects.

What’s your commute like?

I drive from Sunnyside, Queens so most mornings I have to text Shelley that I’m going to be anywhere from 15 minutes to an hour late. The traffic on the Kosciuszko Bridge is just so terrible! Day in and day out I have so much road rage… it drives me crazy.

To meet more of our staff, visit the Brooklyn’s Finest Flickr set.