Museums and Communities News
October 2013 
Mashal Model School, Islamabad, during a program organized by The Phillips Collection and the US Department of State. Image courtesy of The Phillips Collection. More information on this program is available below.

Following is our monthly roundup of stories demonstrating the myriad ways AAMD member museums serve their communities.  


AAMD museums - we want your stories! If you have a community program you would like to see featured in Museums and Communities news please contact Alison Wade.



AAMD's mapping project provides a vivid illustration of museums' reach across their communities.  Participation is free and available to all AAMD members, including museums in Mexico and Canada. If you are interested in having your museum services mapped please contact Andy Finch.



Pakistani Voices at The Phillips Collection

In April 2013, The Phillips Collection partnered with the US Department of State to conduct a series of workshops in Pakistan focusing on art and social change, centered around Jacob Lawrence's The Migration Series. Rachel Goldberg, Manager of School, Outreach and Family Programs at the Phillips, spent three weeks in Pakistan leading the workshops for diverse audiences in Lahore and Islamabad, as well as for orphans and underprivileged children at the Mashal Model School and the SOS Village. 50 Migration-inspired artworks created in these workshops by students and emerging Pakistani artists are now on view at the Phillips in the exhibition Pakistani Voices.     


 "Rachel Goldberg's visit to Pakistan helped forge connections of art and culture between our countries that will last for years to come," says Ambassador to Pakistan Richard Olson. "Such connections are a key element of the long-standing friendship the American and Pakistani people share." Read more about Rachel's experience in Pakistan at the Phillips' blog.  



Cincinnati Art Museums Partner for Alzheimer's Program 

The Cincinnati Art Museum, the Contemporary Arts Center, and the Taft Museum of Art have partnered with the Alzheimer's Association of Greater Cincinnati to create Memories in the Museum, a free program for museum visitors suffering from memory loss. Programs take place on a monthly basis at one of the three partner museums. "Museums are inspirational," said Paula Kollstedt, Executive Director of the Alzheimer's Association of Greater Cincinnati. "This unique program will offer the perfect place for those with memory challenges and their guests to imagine and express themselves in a safe, supportive environment where they can relax and truly enjoy the moment."



Exploring Artism at the Yale Center for British Art

From the Hartford Courant: The Yale Center for British Art has developed a program to help introduce children on the autism spectrum to the art museum. Exploring Artism is open to children on the autism spectrum age 5-10; its goals are to foster inclusiveness for these children and their families and to promote art appreciation and visual literacy. Another goal is to help the children learn museum-appropriate behavior - a challenge for many kids in this age range that is intensified for those on the spectrum.

Parents say that the special training YCBA docents and guards receive makes a big difference in helping their families feel comfortable in the museum. "The staff is really respectful. They made us feel a sense of belonging and acceptance," one parent said. "Sometimes you go to a place and people say 'what is going on with your kid?' They don't do that...the biggest thing is that my son keeps asking when we're going back."
The monthly Senior Park Bench tour and social is part of the Montclair Art Museum's Creative Aging Initiative. Image courtesy of the Montclair Art Museum.

Senior Park Bench at the Montclair Art Museum   

As part of its Creative Aging Initiative, the Montclair Art Museum is hosting an "artistic social outing" for seniors on the second Wednesday of each month called Senior Park Bench. Participants learn about art at the museum on a different theme each month (Art and Food, Native American Art) and then creatively respond, followed by socializing and refreshments.



Locally Made Exhibition and Programming at the RISD Museum

The RISD Museum's first large survey of work from the greater-Providence area in more than 20 years, Locally Made, is being used as a springboard to create dynamic new conversations between the Museum, the Rhode Island School of Design community, and artists and visitors throughout the region.


One component of the show is the daily series One Room. One Room transforms a gallery into a multifaceted programming space where 250 invited artists, designers, performers, and other community members are teaching and experimenting in a variety of collaborative workshops, collective discussions, lectures, and performances over the course of the three-and-a-half month exhibition. You can follow the daily One Room events on Instagram and Twitter at #oneroommuseum.



Nasher XChange: Interactive Sculptures Throughout Dallas 
To celebrate its tenth anniversary, the Nasher Sculpture Center has commissioned ten public sculptures by contemporary artists on view at sites throughout Dallas between October and February 2014.  The exhibition, called Nasher XChange, covers a diverse range of neighborhoods and approaches to sculpture. Many of the sculptures relate specifically to their location in Dallas and/or have an interactive community component. For example, Lara Almarcegui's contribution, Buried House, is a collaboration with Dallas Area Habitat for Humanity. Alfredo Jaar's Music (Everything I know I learned the day my son was born) features a chorus of crying newborns; Dallas citizens expecting a child in the next year had the opportunity to sign up to have their child included. (Those newborn Dallasites will be the Nasher's first lifetime members.) A full list of sculptures and programming is available at the Nasher's website.

Flint Institute of Arts hosts College Town Leadership Summit 

From On September 28, one hundred students from four local universities came together with Flint community leaders for the College Town Leadership Summit at the Flint Institute of Arts. The Summit, which was proposed and coordinated by students from the FIA's College Town Student Advisory Council, included leadership training, mentoring, group brainstorming, and community service, all on the subject of Flint's future. Participating community leaders included U.S. Rep. Dan Kildee; Flint Mayor Dayne Walling; and FIA Director John Henry. Andrew Sierra, a local student and the Summit's chairperson, said "I think that the most important thing is that the students leave recognizing that Flint is on the way up and they can have a hand in making it successful...this is really exemplary of how true collaborations can make things happen for our city."  

Jule Collins Smith Museum Opens First Outdoor Sculpture Exhibition 
From The Jule Collins Smith Museum of Art is celebrating its tenth anniversary with its first exhibition of outdoor sculpture. 70 artists from all over the country submitted 120 works for consideration in "Out of the Box: An Outdoor Juried Sculpture Exhibition." The ten winning selections are now on view at the JCSMA grounds.  JCSMA hosted a 10th Birthday Party and Free Family Day featuring free art activities and art history lessons centered around Out of the Box and other museum exhibitions. More on Out of the Box is available at the JCSMA website.