Keeping the Conversation Going

Greetings everyone! My name is Grace Kriger, and I would like to introduce myself and my role here at the Kennedy Museum of Art. Currently, I am a senior at Ohio University pursuing a B.S.C. in Integrated Media Production and minors in Studio Art and History. My work is driven by passion, dedication, and optimism, which are traits that I value above all else. As the Communications Assistant, I specialize in original content creation through traditional, digital, and social methods. With every interaction, I strive to lead, expand, and improve the museum’s virtual presence by supporting and collaborating with others. When I began my position back in January 2021, I quickly set about creating new ways to engage with our online audience and bring our educational activities and art collections to them.

At KMA, we believe that exhibits and collections serve as places for launching debates, forging links, and developing new ideas. This past Spring semester, we focused on expanding our newly founded Instagram account and Facebook group. Our Instagram page is a great place to learn about the inner workings of our team and we recently passed our 200-follower mark back in April! Our Facebook group serves a fantastic place for our Education Team to share interactive programs as we ask our group members to share pictures or videos of them participating. Currently we have over a hundred participants a part of our Facebook Group and we hope to continue building and growing this community!

(KMA Facebook Group and Instagram Page)

We also launched IGTV on our Instagram back in March following with monthly releases relating to our Family Art and Science Encounters. IGTV video is a standalone app that can be used in conjunction with Instagram. It’s basically Instagram’s response to YouTube in that it’s designed for watching extended content on mobile devices. This has allowed us to share videos we designed for children and adults to engage in shared creative learning activities. Items in our collections and exhibits served as inspiration for new ideas focused on art and science explorations. Moreover, we were able to introduce our 2021 KMA Education Team through the use of story takeovers. Our team members gave our followers a unique behind-the-scenes from their fresh perspectives. You can check out these stories on our highlights section of our Instagram.

(KMA IGTV Episodes)

Lastly, we also initiated bi-weekly art challenges, roundtable discussions, and a weekly social media engagement that focused on art and wellness! Looking for a way to increase our engagement with our followers, I began a series of art challenges as a way to start conversations and encourage audience participation. As our social media platforms grow, I wanted to develop a new way to connect and highlight the objects in our collections that may not always be accessible to the public eye. When it comes to the roundtable discussions, our team member Marissa Stewart created a series of Roundtable Conversations to discuss topics around museum issues, trends, and challenges and how those relate to society, communities, and the individual. It was a place for conversations and exploration within the realm of the Kennedy Museum and we were able to successfully market these events on both our Instagram and Facebook platforms. Looking back at our Wellness Wednesday project, our former team member Sarah Weekman developed a social media program that connected art with health. You can find these activities on both our Instagram account and our Facebook group!

(KMA Roundtable Promotion & Art Challenge)

Overall, it was a bit of a learning curve, in both terms of technology we were using and having to reach out to a virtual audience, but we have been privileged to grow and engage with hundreds of viewers of different ages and abilities across the whole community, while also helping them to explore and access our collections. It is without a doubt that this year has been unlike any other, but that has not stopped us from finding ways to highlight and share engaging encounters with our viewers. From virtual meetings to online activities, the Education team at the Kennedy Museum of Art has been hard at work behind the scenes creating virtual tours, offering free online learning resources, and access to our digital collections and online exhibits.

I hope you all take advantage of KMA’s virtual programming and online archives and we cannot wait to see you again in person! Thank you for taking the time to learn more about your KMA team and what we do! If you have not already, be sure to follow us on Instagram and join our Facebook group stay updated as we continue to grow our online community and we hope everyone has a safe and wonderful summer!

Grace Kriger, Communications Assistant