Tuesday, July 17, 2012

MTS @ Museum of Art and Design

It is the second session of MTS Summer ’12. And most of us (new members) do not know exactly what we are going to be working on this summer yet. But we are sitting with Cathleen Lewis, the director of School, Youth and Family Programs at the Museum of Art and Design. After giving us an intro about the museum, her work, and most importantly (to us,) insight into the various programs at the museum, Cathleen stresses how important she thinks it’s for us to explore topics that could help shape the museum teen programs in NYC and beyond by asking questions such as “what are teens interested in nowadays?” Do people who are responsible for teen programs at museums know what teens are interested in? What they want? Or, maybe like Cathleen, they know but they occasionally have doubts. By the end of the meeting, we definitely started thinking about our mini investigation projects and the specific questions we want to answer. 

Being in a museum, we didn’t want to leave without touring it. So Kiana, a former Artslife member and current MTS member showed us around the museum she represents, specifically through an exhibition called Changing Hands: Art Without Reservation, featuring contemporary Native art. Noteworthy things are that it’s the only one in the city with open artist studios and that its collections are in every imaginable material. So imagine how much we gazed at them! After over bonding over favorite wine glass designs, we met with the current Artslife interns and did an exercise to understand how various age groups view art differently.
All of what had happened that afternoon though, led us back to our continuing discussion. Why are there museums? What is their purpose? But before the imminent serious discussion, Marit showed us a lighthearted cartoon about the topic called “We Love Museums... Do Museums Love Us Back?” The day ended with a discussion that was what any good discussion should be…..full of critiquing, provocative questions, theories, ideas. 

-Lu Yi