Has a painting or drawing ever stopped you in your tracks? Have you ever circled a sculpture, collating angles and comparing views? Have you ever been challenged, or simply amused, by an installation or performance?
If so, you’re not alone. On May 18, more than 100 institutions across North America will celebrate Art Museum Day with a variety of free activities, special programming and other initiatives.
This fourth annual event, organized by the Association of Art Museum Directors (AAMD), is designed to highlight the impact of museums within their communities and the importance of the visual arts to society at large.
In Missouri, WUSTL’s Mildred Lane Kemper Art Museum — one of only four AAMD member institutions in the state — will welcome visitors with refreshments and student-led tours as well as art-making opportunities and discounts in the Museum Shop.
“Museums, by their very nature, are dedicated to serving the public,” said Sabine Eckmann, William T. Kemper Director and Chief Curator of the Kemper Art Museum, who was elected to the AAMD last fall.
“Everything we do — from planning exhibitions and developing related programming to collecting artworks and preserving them for future generations — is intended to educate and inspire,” Eckmann continued. “Art Museum Day represents an important opportunity for museums to reach out and engage the broadest possible audience, and for that audience to reciprocate by sharing their own encounters with art.”
The AAMD’s Art Museum Day coincides with International Museum Day, organized annually around the world by the International Council of Museums. Visitors are encouraged to post stories, responses and reflections on social media platforms, via the hashtag #ArtMuseumDay, and through the Kemper Art Museum’s social media channels.
Founded in 1916, the AAMD represents approximately 210 directors of art museums throughout the United States, Canada and Mexico. The group is dedicated to establishing and maintaining high standards for both its members and the museums they represent, and serves as a forum for the exchange of information and the exploration of ideas.
For more information, call (314) 935-4523 or visit kemperartmuseum.wustl.edu.