Feb. 18-24 , 2000
What's the University for? Series of speakers will address the role of higher education in a changing world
Holt book honored
University to begin drug testing for safety-sensitive positions

New book of personal essays reveals what teachers hope will last a lifetime

Q&A: Karen Van Lengen's challenge as dean
Bush stumps for involvement in politics
Notable - awards and achievements of faculty and staff
From the Desk of ... Jill Hartz, Bayly Art Museum director
Hot Links - theangle.com
In Memoriam - Dr. Wayne Stephen Cail
Gates' film gives new view of African history

Small art museum has big ambitions

Jill Hartz
Jill Hartz, Director, Bayly Art Museum

To rephrase, with apologies to Heraclitus, You can never step into the same museum twice. My intention is not to discourage museum visitors, but on the contrary, to encourage you to come again -- and again. And that's one of the greatest challenges facing the director of a relatively small museum in a relatively small community. Seen it, done that? I doubt it. Even more, I promise that each visit to the museum will be a different experience -- and that the more you come, the more rewarding those visits will be.

Imagine yourself to be a first-year student. In a critical way, although we program for a growingly diverse constituency, that student is our first priority. We keep in mind a four-year program period, the average residency of an undergraduate. If that student makes just four museum visits a year, spaced over time, he or she would graduate with an expansive sense of artistic creation and a sensitivity to cultural diversity. If that student were an art, architecture, or anthropology major, he or she would benefit from studying actual works in classes held in our Iron Gate Study Gallery. And if that student just wanted to learn more or become more involved in the museum, he or she could become a docent, intern or receptionist and serve on the University's Art Board, helping to plan a major visual event like Daniel Reeves's ideogram on the slope across from the Education School or Agnes Denes's upcoming Poetry Walk.

On average, the museum presents four large and eight small special exhibitions each year. These supplement and enhance the permanent collection, relate to the curriculum, and further faculty research and community interests. Today, for instance, you can see temporary exhibitions of Native American art, African masks, prints by African American contemporary women, and contemporary ceramics. Two of these shows were, in fact, organized by students. Our permanent collection galleries cover other fields -- ancient, Asian, American and European art.

And this is a small museum. Imagine what it could be if our facility campaign is successful. Not only could we show more of our collection (and in more exciting ways), we could borrow paintings by Picasso and Cezanne, for example, which we can't do in a facility without climate control. We could offer studio workshops for all ages, present art films on a regular schedule, and commission pieces by artists-in-residence. We could become a magnet for innovative collaborations and a center for contemplation and cultural life.

Then, if you were this student, you might even come back for a visit after you graduate.


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