February 15, 2021
Wellness Wednesday: An Inside Look
Hi everyone! Its Sarah, here to tell you about another exciting initiative the Kennedy Museum of Art is offering, a weekly social media engagement focusing on art and wellness. We know that people everywhere have struggled in various ways due to the Coronavirus Pandemic.
While art museums have long been proponents of the relationship between art and wellness, the Coronavirus pandemic has prompted museums across the world to consider their connections more deeply. Mental and physical health is important to talk about whether in the middle of a pandemic or not. I joined the KMA team this academic year as a way to diversify our curriculum and expand our horizons. We have created a cross disciplinary group that allows me to bring my Psychology background and new ideas to the museum. I am not an art-person myself per se. I could not tell you about types of brush strokes or which era a piece of art is from. However, something that anyone can do is appreciate artwork and interpret it in a way that is useful to you. A lot of times an artist group can feel intimidating because you may think you do not have much to offer for a discussion. You are WRONG! As a non-art person, you have completely new and valid ideas and interpretations. I am going to tell you about my own research into ways art museums across the United States have expanded their audience.
First, let’s talk about what a museum’s goal is in reference to wellness. A museum wishes to provide relaxation, introspection, promotion of positive emotions, raise awareness, lower stress levels, improve memory, encourage socialization, increase empathy, increase observational skills and more.
Next, let’s talk about how a museum reaches this goal through artwork. So, there is this area of the brain called the medial orbitofrontal cortex, AKA the emotion regulation and reward/ punishment area of the brain. Artwork evokes emotion and if your emotions are triggered in the same area as your reward center, your brain views this as a satisfying and positive activity and will therefore “reward” you for doing so. Relating images to your own personal experience will facilitate self-reflection and can often help recall positive memories.
A study was conducted where individual’s salivary cortisol (stress hormone) and systolic blood pressure levels were measured before and after a similar program. These individuals from various backgrounds were NOT asked to comprehend or give concrete conclusions about artwork. Therefore, this type of program can be beneficial to anyone. Anyway, as you may have assumed, their blood pressure AND cortisol levels were significantly reduced following the program. Other studies have used neuroimaging (fMRI) to measure if one’s aesthetic experience to artwork evokes those positive emotion reward centers we talked about earlier.
This program’s goal is to respond to art, NOT study the theoretical discipline of art.
These methodologies have been used across countless domains. Individuals with mental health problems, dementia, Alzheimer’s, veterans, the socially isolated, nurses, and college students are all examples of populations that have seen success with art and wellness related programs.
Now let’s finally talk about the initiative I am engaging in this semester in my role at the KMA. We are going to post weekly mindfulness/ wellness activities and art-related prompts on Instagram. These posts are not tailored to any one population and range from talking about pets and shopping to body positivity and stress coping. We will provide motivational and self-reflection activities each week. Our goal is to promote spaces for mental and physical wellbeing for anyone and everyone who chooses to use these activities.
Thank you for listening and I hope you are excited about this project. Follow our Instagram @kennedymuseumartedu to catch these posts. If you are interested in the science behind Art & Wellness or you want to learn more, check out these links below.
Stay happy and stay healthy,
February 12, 2021
The Ridges Tours in Spanish
Hi everyone! My name is Sarah and I am a part of the Spanish team here at the Kennedy Museum of Art. We have an exciting new tour to share with Spanish language learners and our Spanish speaking audience! As you all know, The Ridges (Las Cimas) have been a huge attraction for students and visitors of Athens alike. If you are interested in learning more and debunking rumors about our beloved Ridges, this is the event for you!
We are going to discuss the architecture, the grounds, mental health development, before and after photographs, history of the Dairy Barn and more. At the end of the presentation, we will be having a discussion, as well as a game of jeopardy based on the presentation. We are offering four time slots, with only 10 allowed per time. Times are as follows:
February 26th: 10:45am-11:40am, 11:50am-12:45pm
March 6th: 12:45pm-1:40pm, 4:15pm-5:10pm
You can sign up using this link:
Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org for any questions.
We hope to see you there,
Sarah and Carrie, Spanish Education Team
February 9, 2021
As we mark the first Ohio University “wellness break” day of the semester I would like to introduce a NEW art and wellness social media initiative, led by team member Sarah Weekman and our student museum experiences team.
While KMA has been involved in various partnerships and collaborations with the health field over the years, we – like art museums across the world – have found ourselves reflecting on these relationships in a deeper manner in light of the many repercussions of the Covid-19 pandemic.
As KMA reopens physically to the general public this month and puts into practice the necessary social distancing measures, the visitor experience has necessarily shifted to an emphasis on individual reflection.
As we continue to engage virtually with visitors, we are finding new ways to embrace the sharing of our collections and to stimulate meaningful museum experiences between visitors and our amazing Ohio University student staff. One of the goals of the museum is to function as a teaching museum – a laboratory environment that promotes teamwork across disciplines. One of the iterations of this goal is our new art and wellness social media initiative.
Sarah, a psychology major, has been researching the many ways art museums engage with health and wellness activities and the potential for objects in the KMA collections to prompt reflection and stimulate benefits for both our mental and physical wellbeing. Stay tuned for her upcoming blog and “Wellness Wednesdays” social media initiative, which will pair images of objects in our collections with both thought and activity prompts.
And, as a precursor on this OHIO wellness break day, take a look at one of the Navajo weavings in the current exhibition (both physical and online) Pattern & Disruption: Diné Lifeways and Embedded Mathematics and consider the expression of the concept of healing, protection and balance (hózhó) in the label conversation between the curators.
Sally Delgado, curator of education
January 19, 2021
Happy 2021! The Kennedy Museum education team hopes you had a restful holiday break. Our team is back together and hitting the ground running on new programs and experiences for the Athens community. We are welcoming a new team member, Grace Kriger, who is joining us as our social media PACE intern! Stay tuned on our blog, Facebook pages, and Instagram to keep up to date on what we are doing!
Madeline Kramer, Outreach Programs Assistant
December 17, 2020
As we near the end of 2020 we are reflecting on the positive outcomes of working as a team in virtual mode. Our small KMA staff of four has taken on new roles and welcomed the opportunity to continue exploring transdisciplinary collaborations with the Ohio Museum Complex. New teams of OHIO student interns came on board in all areas of operations and continue to make the museum a vital virtual presence as they also prepare for safely reopening with limited in-person experiences in the future.
The museum experiences team of graduate assistants, undergraduate interns and volunteers collaborated from different parts of the state to facilitate art and science-based activities that can be done from home. Check out the Fall 2020 Highlights and enjoy these Virtual Family Art & Science Encounters with your family during the holidays!
December 3, 2020
Athens High School Visits: COVID-19 Style
Hello readers! My name is Madeline Kramer and I am the Outreach Programs Assistant here at the KMA.
The first two weeks of November, Athens High School art students visited the Kennedy Museum- virtually. I had the privilege of working on this program with Tristen Luken, the Academic Programs Assistant, and Curator of Education Sally Delgado to create an experience that would both engage the students but also translate easily to the online format.
We began meeting as a team with the high school educators, Ellen Gagliano and Amy Ashcraft, in the fall to see how we could deliver an interesting experience for the students. Some students are working from home and some are present in the classroom, which was an additional challenge to make sure the program was accessible to all students. We decided on both synchronous and asynchronous lessons as part of our program- especially since we were restricted to 45 minutes with the in-class students!
Sally led the behind-the-scenes virtual visit in the collections storage area in the basement of the museum via Zoom. In this portion, the students were able to see how art is stored and kept in pristine condition when not on display. Sally showcased many prints and paintings, both large and small, and how they are organized in the collection.
The next class day, Tristen and other museum education staff such as myself held a virtual “question and answer” portion with the students- the staff showcasing their work and fielding questions on everything from their creative process to being in college in a pandemic. We are lucky to have so many talented artists of different mediums on our staff to show the high schoolers! Tristen also compiled a slideshow of local artists, art professors at Ohio University, and other undergraduate students and their art, as well as an explanatory video for the asynchronous students.
Finally, I created an explanatory slideshow on the history of The Ridges and how it relates to KMA. During our planning meetings, the high school teachers made us aware that the students are often confused about The Ridges, thinking of it as “the scary place on the hill”. I wanted to quell some of the confusion as much as I could as they were not coming to the museum in person themselves!
While this in no way was a typical high school visit, I feel that this was a great learning experience for both the students and the museum staff. There is so much uncertainty right now, but I am grateful we could still deliver some sort of experience for the students. We are all still very much learning how to exist in this virtual environment, and I hope some of the skills we created for the Athens High School visits can extend to other programs!
Madeline Kramer, Outreach Programs Assistant
November 2, 2020
What projects are you working on?
Hello! My name is Marissa and I would like to introduce myself and what programs I am working on at the Kennedy Museum of Art!
I am a Photography + Integrated Media graduate student and I am currently in my second year in the program and have one more full year to go. For most, if not all of my post-secondary schooling, I have been a photography major. The arts are something that have always stayed consistent within my life. My first experiences with art came from visits to the Toledo Museum of Art in Toledo, OH as a child. When the opportunity came up to apply for a position at KMA, I jumped at the chance to be part of a museum education program and to hopefully give back to others what I received as a child.
I am one of the two Graduate Assistants working with KMA this year. There are two main programs at the moment that I am working on. The first one being Virtual Family Art & Science Encounters and the second one, still in the development stages, is The Roundtable Series. The Virtual Family Art & Science Encountersprogram is a collaboration between KMA and the OHIO Museum Complex to provide at-home creative learning activities and projects focused on explorations in art and science inspired by objects in our museum collections and exhibitions. My role in this program has been to create encounters (ex. October’s Encounter: Cyanotypes), manage upcoming encounters, assist with any formatting or technical issues, and oversee distribution.
The second program that I’m developing is The Roundtable Series. This program is meant to create a space online for discussion surrounding ideas about museum issues, societal issues, the role of a museum, social topics, as well as discussions spurred from objects in the KMA collection or exhibitions. The goal is to connect the museum to the current social climate that forms dialog as well as keep the museum connected to the community while KMA is closed to the public due to COVID-19.
Working on these programs has been exciting and informative. Navigating the virtual space of KMA and bringing creative, interesting content to our community in ways they can access at home until we can welcome them back is truly a joy!
I hope you all check out the virtual programming the KMA has to offer, and we can’t wait to welcome you back in person! Thank you for taking the time to get to know your KMA staff and what we are up to!
Marissa Stewart, Graduate Assistant
October 1, 2020
A day in the life as an intern
Welcome to the Kennedy Museum of Art (KMA), that building up on the hill in Ohio University’s Ridges. Maybe you have been here before with your family for parents’ weekend, or maybe you hiked up to The Ridges and saw the magnificent entrance to the Kennedy Museum of Art. Maybe you have walked through an exhibit for a class or with friends. Have you ever wondered what goes on behind the scenes in a museum? Have you ever wondered the daily tasks of an employee at the museum? My name is Sarah and I am going to tell you my experience as an employee working at KMA.
I am a Spanish and Psychology major and it is sadly, my last year here at OU. I have always been interested in art and architecture and always make a point to seek out these types of locations in my travels. However, I have never been formally involved in art classes or a position like this one. I found myself working for KMA through a work study position. I formerly worked as a Program to Aide Career Exploration (PACE) tutor but was looking for something a little more interactive so that I could work with a team. That is exactly what I found in this position!
I am the Educational Programs Assistant. I assist with Spanish projects for Ohio University’s language department, social media, and programming. My days consist of various meetings with the wonderful team of humans at the museum. I work with a team of undergraduate and graduate students, as well as Sally Delgado. We discuss what each person has been working on and give ourselves deadlines for the next developments on projects. I coordinate with other Spanish, arts, and communication students. I work on translating documents and creating programs for Spanish students, writing blogs and social media posts as well as with anything else that someone may need help.
Although working at a museum virtually may seem like a difficult approach, there is still plenty to do and plenty to see! I unfortunately have not yet had the opportunity to work inside the actual museum due to COVID-19. However, we have all been very involved in creating a solid online presence at the museum and hope to return to in person very soon.
The Kennedy is a small treasure in Athens, and I encourage you all to come visit when we are open to the public. Please direct any questions to email@example.com. Thank you for reading and see you next time.
Sarah Weekman, Educational Programs Assistant
September 30, 2020
Incredibly, we have reached the middle of week 6 of the semester. I’m happy to report that our Museum Experiences Team has been busy behind-the-scenes in creating a plan to increase the museum’s educational presence in social media as well as in the Virtual Portal. A new Virtual Family Art & Science Encounters portal will be available soon and students have been assisting with synchronous class tours and visual literacy sessions. We have met virtually f2f with new students in the Honors Tutorial College, early childhood education classes, art and studio classes, and first year medical students. Plans are underway for a week of class connections with Athens High School in October and Solid Ground School in January.
We are excited to add our new team of student interns to the voices that you will hear on this blog as they reflect on their own museum experiences and seek out connections across campus.
Sally Delgado, Curator of Education
August 24, 2020
As we mark the first day of classes for Fall 2020 semester, I am appreciative once again of having a fabulous new team of students and staff ready to tackle the extended virtual reality we continue to navigate. While KMA remains physically closed we invite you to visit us virtually: over the summer Basil, Lisa and I created a KMA Virtual Portal to reflect our new “open” hours so that you may connect with us anytime from anywhere.
There are a couple of other developments to note. Our colleague Lisa Quinn has moved into the new role of Registrar at KMA but will continue to be part of the Museum Experiences Team as the main facilitator for visual literacy activities that focus on Visual Thinking Strategies (VTS). We welcome Basil and Carrie back in new positions at KMA: Basil as Consultant and Carrie as Spanish Language Programs Assistant. We have entered a new collaboration this year with the School of Art + Design and are delighted to have two Graduate Assistants working with the team: Kelly Hanning and Marissa Stewart, both second year MFA students. In addition, four new PACE and Community Work Study students from a variety of discipline areas join us: Katherine Keber, Madeline Kramer, Tristen Luken and Sarah Weekman.
We look forward to engaging with you in new ways as we move forward this semester!
June 26, 2020
Twice a year we share museum experience highlights from the previous months. I can only summarize Spring 2020 as being about VOICE and ascertain that the word “highlights” does not even have the right tone to encompass the totality of events we reflect on this semester:
- The joyful reconnection and presence of Diné (Navajo) voices with the Museum’s Southwest Native American collection.
- The gratitude of shared experiences across discipline areas, including medical students and faculty in the three Heritage College of Osteopathic Medicine campuses.
- The uncertainty and hope in our students’ voices as we adjusted to new realities after Spring Break.
- The shepherding of our youngest visitor voices and the appreciation of those of our elders.
- The acknowledgement that our individual and collective voices must not remain silent in the face of a voice heard internationally as breath was taken away.
- The belief that the voice of the arts is powerful and that all people have a place within that voice.
We invite you to view Spring 2020.
June 19, 2020
Celebrate Juneteenth today!
“Not everything that is faced can be changed, but nothing can be changed until it is faced.” James Baldwin
April 24, 2020
As we near the end of the semester and log the last six weeks of it as teamwork accomplished through virtual means I’d like to recognize and thank our team for jumping into an arena we could not have imagined a month and a half ago.
Lisa Quinn (Educational Programs Coordinator) turned “on a dime” and converted the annual Emerging Artists exhibition into an online version for our website and facilitated virtual visual literacy workshops with the staff of the OHIO Child Development Center. Basil Masri Zada (Graduate Associate) has been instrumental in facilitating the conversion of exhibition and program content into virtual formats and in shepherding our transition to a new website management system. PACE interns have stepped up to the plate in making sure our planned programs have new modes of access. Sarah Melaragno has been our designer extraordinaire in switching Art Encounters plans to at-home use and converting images to online viewing. Rachel Broughton, Carrie Summerford and Jess Minarchek (who thought they would be busy with face-to-face tours) converted their Spanish language gallery tour activities into online activities. Rachel dove into a partnering project with the OHIO Museum Complex while Jess and Sarah created an outdoor activity to complement mAppAthens tours. Carrie, who will be returning to work with us next year, is delving into research for upcoming exhibitions.
This experience is certainly calling on different strengths for all of us and challenges us to maintain our sense of humor in the face of so many unknowns. Three members of our team are graduating – Jess, Sarah and Rachel – and we greatly appreciate the two years they have shared with us at KMA. What an unprecedented (I know, overused word…) situation they have found themselves in during their last weeks as undergraduate students! We extend our gratitude and assurance that they have played a trailblazing role in helping us to reimagine what our work at KMA will embrace and nurture as we move forward.
Museums around the world are encouraging us, now more than ever, to visit them virtually. We asked our student interns to take advantage of this opportunity and select an online museum experience that they are drawn to, encouraged by, or just enjoy.
We hope you enjoy their selections! View here.
April 7, 2020
We have certainly seen a different world come into being since greeting the Spring 2020 semester in January. As we all scramble to adjust to a “new normal” for the remainder of this semester we want to share a little of the Behind-the-Scenes of putting together the exhibition Pattern and Disruption: Diné Lifeways and Embedded Mathematics, which opened on February 1. While the Kennedy Museum of Art is currently closed for in-person visits we hope you enjoy this opportunity to see a little peek into the work (and people) behind this project…. And that you visit us in person when we are once again open to the public!
Sally Delgado, Curator of Education
January 9, 2020
Happy New Year and New Decade! As we get ready for two new exhibits to open (Picture the World: Burhan Dogancay as Photographer on January 10 and Pattern & Disruption: Diné Lifeways and Embedded Mathematics on February 1) take a look at highlights from this past fall!
November 12, 2019
Snow on the ground this morning prompted me to realize how far into this semester we are already! Our staff has been busy with everything from University classes (Education, Art, Spanish, Theater) and learning community visits, K-12 visits (Federal Hocking, Trimble , Ross-Pike and homeschool), community visits from the Athens Photographic Project, to a collaborative Art Encounters program with the WOUB Public Media’s Learning Lab!
Visual literacy workshops, led by Lisa Quinn, have gotten off the ground with a variety of participating classes from four different colleges: Education, HCOM, Fine Arts and CHSP. Thursday evening Walk & Talks have included three guest curators and two collectors. One more Collector Walk & Talk to go on December 5 with Christine Miles and Aaron Smith.
Our Graduate Associate Basil Masri Zada has been covering a lot of ground this semester, from exhibition technologies to program planning and facilitation. Take a look at our new Community tab featuring a workshop he facilitated this semester in collaboration with the Athens Photographic Project.
September 9, 2019
Week 3 already! We are so pleased to have Sarah, Rachel, Jess and Basil returning this year as part of our Museum Experiences Team! While everyone has a slightly new role our basic team approach remains in place. We also welcome Carrie Summerford as she joins us for 2019-2020.
Our Educational Programs Coordinator, Lisa Quinn will engage in a new role by focusing her attention on strengthening and expanding visual literacy activities in the Museum. Stop by and visit the Visual Literacy Gallery on the second floor, where selected objects from the collections have been installed to stimulate conversation on how we create meaning, both individually and collectively, from visual images. Reach out to Lisa (QUINNL@OHIO.EDU) for information regarding workshops designed to slow down visual processing and enhance empathy.
We are also beginning a new partnership with the Southeastern Ohio Chapter of the Alzheimer’s Association of Greater Cincinnati and will be working with members of the Friends of Kennedy Museum this fall to train and offer a program called Memories in the Museum.
Join us for curator and collector talks on select Thursday evenings this semester as we celebrate the act of collecting:
- Recent Acquisitions: Storytelling Through Practices of Collecting
Curator Walk & Talk with Katherine E. Hammond
Thursday, September 26
5:30 – 6:30 pm
- Reflective Objects: Collectors and their Collections
Curator Talk with Jessica Cyders and Stacey Lavender
Thursday, October 10
5:30 – 6:30 pm
- Collector Talks coming in October and November!
Our amazing student staff just facilitated the first Family Art Encounters of the year with guest artist Peilian Wu and over 45 participants. Stay tuned for information on our website about the October 6 Art Encounters with guest curator Katherine Hammond.
It’s a beautiful time of year on The Ridges – come up for a walk and stop by the Museum!
August 12, 2019
Summer will be over before we know it! Collections (and collecting!) will continue to be the highlight of fall semester’s exhibitions. We are currently preparing two upcoming exhibitions with guest curators Jessica Cyders and Stacey Lavender (Reflective Objects: Collectors and their Collections) and Katherine Hammond (Recent Acquisitions: Storytelling Through Practices of Collecting). As we work behind-the-scenes for these to open to the public on August 30 and September 20, respectively, stop by the Museum for the last few weeks of Merging Concepts V: Exploring Realities and take a look at some highlights from Spring 2019!
June 4, 2019
Visit Kennedy Museum of Art on The Ridges this summer! Admission is free and there are various exhibitions to enjoy. As you enter our historic building there is a foyer display in honor of the 2018 Sesquicentennial celebration of the Athens Asylum, curated in collaboration with the Southeast Ohio History Center. Also off the lobby area in the “Tower Lounge” is a display of cyanotypes created by our student interns and East Elementary School students during recent field trips. Check out the booklet created by interns Emma Stefanoff and Rachel Broughton featuring this impressive collaborative endeavor. And speaking of collaboration, we want to thank the OHIO Museum Complex initiative for partnering with KMA during field trip visits by over 750 students this spring! Their new exhibit on the second floor, Through the Appalachian Forest: Field Explorations Illuminated by the Floyd Bartley Herbarium provided inspiration for the cyanotype activity, along with the KMA exhibition of Federal Hocking High School photography (now closed).
Other exhibitions to not miss this summer are Selections from the Collections (which kicks off the upcoming year of celebrating the Museum as a collections based institution) and the 2018-2019 Museum Studies Certificate Program exhibition Merging Concepts V: Exploring Realities, both on the first floor of the Museum.
Enjoy summer in Athens!
May 1, 2019
As our student interns wrap up another semester in their courses of study we reflect on the programming they have facilitated over the year at KMA. Take a look at the most recent intern blogs – we are so pleased that both Rachel and Jess will be continuing their work at the Museum next year and will continue to contribute to the Spanish language programs which will see some exciting changes for the intermediate level tours.
January 19, 2019
Happy New Year! We have an exciting month ahead of us with internationally renowned artist Carrie Mae Weems on campus and an exhibition opening of her recent work. Click here for more details.
As we do the behind-the-scenes work for our Spring exhibition calendar, which also includes the School of Art + Design Faculty Biennial, take a look at a few highlights from last semester. [Highlights Fall 2018].
December 24, 2018
KMA will be closed during Ohio University’s winter closure December 25 – January 1. Happy Holidays and check out the latest Intern Blog by Katelyn Vesco!
November 25, 2018
It has been a busy semester and we have welcomed many visitors to our Fall exhibitions Border Crossing: Video Installations by Dictaphone Group and A Story of Flying: 20 Years of Passion Works. Our student intern team has settled into a rhythm of seamlessly moving from family programs to University class tours to Spanish extra credit tours to Head Start visits! Check out a new section on our blog, “Intern Blog,” that gives our fantastic team the opportunity to share their own experiences working at KMA! And don’t forget to visit before the semester ends 🙂
July 22, 2018
Lisa and I attended the Association of Academic Museums and Galleries (AAMG) and the International Council of Museums’ Committee (ICOM) for University Museums and Collections (UMAC) 2018 Joint Conference held at the University of Miami this June. Four days of events and sessions were centered around the theme of “Audacious Ideas: University Museums and Collections as Change-Agents for a Better World.” Two keynote speakers (Franklin Kelly, Deputy Director and Chief Curator of the National Gallery of Art; and Paula Gangopadhyay, Deputy Director of the Office of Museum Services at the Institute of Museum and Library Services) were inspirational and encouraging to all of us in the trenches of academic museums. Our favorite sessions included those on collaborations across campus, including the facilitation of “difficult conversations” in our museum spaces, partnerships between library archives and museum collections, and connections between medical training curricula and educational practices in the academic art museum. In truth, these are all things we have been thinking about, or “incubating,” as one of our favorite faculty partners would say. Some we have actually begun to put into practice. But we returned with simmering thoughts on how KMA could be more audacious in moving forward and creating a higher level of engagement across campus. Communication is key: visit the Museum this summer and tell us what you would like to see/hear/think about in the future!
Sally Delgado, Curator of Education
May 23, 2018
We just wrapped up our last school tour for this year with a visit from Athens Middle School 7th and 8th graders and their teacher Dana Dieterle! In the past month we have shared gallery and studio experiences with over 600 students and teachers from East, Union Furnace, Alexander and Coolville Elementary Schools, as well as Meigs Middle School. A huge thank you to our students who stayed on after the end of the semester and to our volunteers who stepped in to assist when we no longer had our academic year student staff. To Norma Humphreys and Jennifer Cantu from the Friends of Kennedy Museum, and Abigale Collins from our Museum Studies class: we could not have done it without you!
KMA was also featured during this year’s Rural Women’s Studies Association Conference, held at Ohio University May 17 – 19. We welcomed over 75 conference attendees with a pre-dinner reception and behind-the-scenes tours of our collection of Navajo weavings with the assistance of Friends of Kennedy Museum board members Madeleine Scott, Norma Humphreys and Janet Izard. The theme for the triennial conference was “Surviving and Thriving: Gender, Justice, Power, and Place Making” and was coordinated by Dr. Katherine Jellison, chair of the History Department.
This past April, Lisa and I were invited to co-present with museum educators from the Dayton Art Institute, the Taft Museum and the Toledo Museum of Art at the annual Ohio Museums Association conference in Dayton. Our session was a whirlwind of gallery experiences called For Kids and Kids at Heart: Gallery Teaching as Play and Social Interaction. We will both be attending the annual conference of the Association of Academic Museums and Galleries in Miami later in June and plan to return with renewed energy and brilliant ideas for the upcoming academic year!
Best wishes for a fabulous summer,
Sally, Lisa and the Team
October 10, 2017
We are almost at mid-term and it has been a busy semester at KMA! Our area has a fabulous new team of students that has already conducted gallery programming with over 130 high school students from Federal Hocking High and Olney Friends School (Barnesville, OH) and toured more than 230 Ohio University students in Learning Community seminars and classes ranging from Interdisciplinary Arts to Writing and Rhetoric and Middle Childhood Social Studies. The team has met with visiting Navajo consultants (Henry, Sally and Perphilia Fowler), designed and implemented two Sunday Family Art Encounters with 70 community participants, and hosted our first Noon Talk speaker, Cassidy Brauner. As I write, we are working on creating 11 Spanish language tours for students in the 2000 level courses to have the opportunity to practice their speaking and listening skills. Whew…
A belated welcome and thank you to Hannah Thome (Graduate Assistant/Art History), Laura Gilbert (Spanish Language Programs Assistant), Katelyn Vesco (Outreach Programs Assistant) and Ayla Towns and Jane Dickerson (Educational Programs Assistants). We are off to a great start for 2017 – 2018 due to your combined skills and enthusiasm for KMA!
July 7, 2017
The education staff just returned from beautiful Eugene, Oregon where we attended the annual conference of the Association of Academic Museums and Galleries. The theme this year was “Why Museums Matter: The Teaching Museum Today” and Lisa and I would concur that it was a whirlwind of sessions packed with fruitful discussions on museum experiences that are part of universities. Sessions dealing with language class visits, community partners and student-curated exhibitions were enhanced by the overall assertion of academic museums as incubators for research and innovation. In addition, we were treated to events at the University of Oregon’s two museums, pictured above. We came home feeling that, while we have much work to do at Ohio University’s Kennedy Museum of Art, we are on the right track with our colleagues across the nation. If you have not yet seen this year’s exhibition curated by the students in the 2016-2017 Museum Studies Certificate Program, come visit!
Sally Delgado, Curator of Education
May 17, 2017
As Summer sessions begin we shift our focus to “behind the scenes” and try to catch our breath from installing two new exhibitions, wrapping up the fourth year of teaching in the Museum Studies Certificate Program, and hosting the last school visit of over 100 fourth graders from Alexander Elementary. Stop by and see highlights from the collection of Navajo weavings in the exhibition RECOUNTAL, and objects from collections across campus and across town in Merging Concepts III.
And, speaking of merging concepts, we are “fired up” with a glimpse into new possibilities for KMA spaces as we witness the demolition of walls in what used to be the old ballroom of the fantastic building we inhabit. The future of this museum is tied to a desire to be transdisciplinary (not multi, or inter, or even cross- ….) – but trans: stay tuned!
Sally Delgado, Curator of Education
May 12, 2017
I decided last semester to start a blog for “museum experiences at KMA,” having no experience as a blogger… It seemed a way to bridge the gap between our somewhat static website and our somewhat sporadic Facebook activity. There were a multitude of really interesting cross-disciplinary activities taking place within the museum’s galleries and these activities were short-lived and then no one knew anything about them because we forgot to document how interesting our museum experiences can be. And then Dr. Ashwini Ganeshan, from the Department of Modern Languages, asked me how she could share through KMA the great writing her students produced in Spanish as they discussed which artworks inspired them in the galleries.
In addition to those writings, our Museum Experiences Blog has started out as more of a picture and video blog of the semester’s events. Things like the student trombone players who embodied sound in an exhibition that until that moment had been more about the visual, or the documentation of a sculpture that until that moment had been a static museum object, being “performed” as it left the building. Browse through our initial efforts at documentation of recent events from Spring 2017 and visit our Summer exhibitions!
Sally Delgado, Curator of Education