Exhibit vs. exhibition

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The difference between exhibit and exhibition is a matter of scale. An exhibit is a public showing of an object—usually a work of art or an object meant to educate—or a small collection of objects. An exhibition is a public showing of a large selection of such items, often united by a theme. For example, a fossilized dinosaur skeleton in the lobby of a museum is an exhibit, and a collection of dinosaur skeletons in a wing of the museum might be called an exhibition.

Of course, exhibit and exhibition have other definitions, but the others aren’t as easily confused as these.


Meanwhile, visitors could view a temporary exhibit inside a metal shed. [Boston Globe]

The brilliant Bruce Conner is among the triumvirate of subversive postwar American artists … celebrated in this exhibition for their poetic use of trash, ephemera, and junk. [Guardian]

Special exhibits—of paintings, drawings, photographs—can be found in galleries and museums throughout its 13-mile length. [National Post]

Loder said he was happy to amend his collection to protect the other designers in his emerging designers exhibition. [Herald Sun]