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July 27, 2011

happy 10th anniversary Annmarie Garden!

Filed under: General — Tags: , , — Jennifer Brundage @ 9:00 am

July 27, 2011

Today marks the 10th anniversary of the Smithsonian’s affiliation with Annmarie Sculpture Garden and Arts Center.  My, what a decade it’s been!

'Africa' by sculptor Isaac Witkin, on loan from the Hirshhorn Museum, on view at Annmarie Sculpture Garden

 Annmarie Garden is currently home to more artwork loans from the Smithsonian’s Hirshhorn Museum than any other Affiliate, with a total of 27 sculptures on long-term loan.  This impressive record is the result of a true partnership.   Annmarie Garden has consistently been willing and able to help the Smithsonian conserve, care for and preserve these works.  Beautifully arranged in a .25 mile meandering path through woods and open space, the first loan dates from 2003.  With the opening of a beautiful new art building in 2008, Annmarie Garden has also featured indoor sculpture from the Smithsonian’s collections.

Our collaboration extends beyond art works.  Annmarie Garden was one of only 5 Affiliates chosen to participate in a pilot project of the Smithsonian’s Lemelson Center for the Study of Invention and Innovation.  The Center’s popular “Spark!Lab” activities were transformed into traveling kits, and adapted by participating Affiliates to complement and highlight their own collections and programming.

The Smithsonian and Annmarie share expertise as well.  A Smithsonian expert is a regular feature on juries for the Garden’s highly creative invitational exhibitions.  Past participants have included an associate director from the National Zoo judging works for the Wild Things exhibition;  the Smithsonian’s director of mobile strategy choosing works for a teen exhibition called text/message, and a Postal Museum curator judging portraits for the About Face exhibition. 

new art building at Annmarie Garden, debuted in 2008

Happy anniversary to Annmarie Garden, and may our creative collaboration continue to flourish in the next decade!

July 26, 2011

Staff on the Road @ fall museum conferences

As we look ahead to conference season, we wanted to share with our Affiliates the schedules of the conferences that Affiliations staff members will be attending.  We’d love for you to come out and visit with us, or share this information with other colleagues you’d like us to meet!

August 3-6, Tallahassee, Florida: National Outreach Manager Alma Douglas will attend the 2011 Association of African American Museums Annual Conference

September 20-23, Tampa, Florida: National Outreach Manager Alma Douglas will participate in a panel discussion at the 2011 Florida Association of Museums Annual Conference.  She and staff from three Florida Affiliates (The Patricia and Phillip Frost Art Museum, Florida International University , Tampa Bay History Center and South Florida Museum and Parker Manatee Aquarium) will discuss the “Benefits of Smithsonian Affiliation.”

October, 25-27, Greenville, South Carolina: External Affairs Manager Christina DiMeglio Lopez and National Outreach Manager Caroline Mah will host a session and exhibitor’s booth at the Southeastern Museums Conference.  Joining them will be staff from Smithsonian Affiliates in the Southeast. 

November 16-18, Harford, Connecticut: Assistant Secretary for Education and Access Claudine Brown will present as a keynote speaker at the New England Museum Association on the topic of, “Museums in the Mirror: Reflecting Relevance in a Diverse Society.”  Smithsonian Affiliations will sponsor a snack break on the first day of the conference hosted by National Outreach Manager, Jennifer Brundage. 

Hope to see you on the road!

 

 

July 25, 2011

uncovering the smithsonian’s jazz archives

James Moody 1984. copyright 2011, Stephanie Myers.

Jazz saxophonist James Moody was raised in Newark, New Jersey, so it is little wonder that the Lincoln Park Coast Cultural District, the sole New Jersey Affiliate, celebrates his legacy so predominantly. In 2008 as part of the District’s annual Music Festival, they hosted a homage to James Moody, in which he himself played with many jazz luminaries, as well as with the Smithsonian’s Jazz Masterworks Orchestra.

When Moody passed away in 2010, Anthony Smith, Director of Communications and Community Affairs, and Producer of the Music Festival, knew that it was time for a major tribute to this legendary figure. That’s when he turned to the Smithsonian. In addition to a musical tribute and naming a housing unit in the District for Moody, Anthony wanted to highlight Moody’s career through images, and to create a photography exhibition in Lincoln Park’s community gallery.

With the help of archivists in the Archives Center of the National Museum of American History, Anthony found a collection of Stephanie Myers’ photographs, an artist and jazz photographer who donated prints to the Smithsonian in 2005 and 2009. In addition to images of Moody and his peers, she also captured timeless moments from prominent jazz festivals, such as La Grande Parade du Jazz in Nice, France, represented in the Archives Center’s collection of her works.

David Haberstich, Curator of Photography in the Archives Center, remarked that a great strength of the Archives Center’s holdings is material related to American music, especially jazz. “This includes a good representation of many fine photographers who specialize in photographing jazz musicians in action, up close and personal,” he said. “We’re eager for opportunities to exhibit these photographs and share them. We’re pleased to show them to anyone by appointment, from members of the general public to serious scholars.”

Although the Smithsonian’s prints could not be reproduced because of intellectual property concerns, seeing this collection “opened a door” for Anthony that led him directly to the photographer herself, who lives in New York City. Stephanie Myers was also a close friend to James Moody. “We hit it off immediately,” says Anthony. “She understood how we were trying to honor James, and wanted to be a part of it.”

James Moody, 1987. Copyright 2011, Stephanie Myers.

Together, they consulted Moody’s discography and crafted an exhibition of 30 of Stephanie’s photographs that highlight Moody and the musicians who played with him throughout his 50+ year career. The prints will be arranged in the gallery much like a stage performance, with Moody surrounded by various members of the rhythm section and fellow soloists. (Many of these same musicians will be playing in the 6th Annual Music Festival in Newark, July 29-31, 2011.) In addition, the gallery will present 20 of the District’s own photographs from the 2008 Music Festival Tribute to Moody.

Music Speaks: Moody’s Musical Moods show will open on July 28, 2011 and run through October. Visitors to the exhibition will be encouraged to leave their memories and experiences with James Moody’s music. Several public programs are planned, including a photography workshop for youth with Stephanie Myers.

“Sometimes collaborations with Affiliates turn out differently than the original plan,” said Jennifer Brundage, National Outreach Manager in Smithsonian Affiliations. “It’s especially nice when it results in new opportunities we hadn’t imagined before!”

 

 

July 24, 2011

Professional Development: Broadening your access to the Smithsonian

We like to say that we’re the “portal” to the Smithsonian here in the Affiliations office for all of our more than 165 Affiliate partners.  And I think that is especially true for those Affiliate staff members who have taken part in our professional development programs over the years. Going behind-the-scenes to learn a new skill, conducting valuable research first-hand, or simply meeting with as many experts as possible to bring an idea to reality, and then bringing that knowledge back home to the Affiliate community is something really unique.  And this collaborative feeling benefits both our Visiting Professionals and our Intern Partners who each have the opportunity to bring something new and exciting back to share with their Affiliate community.  

We’re wrapping up our 2011 Intern Partnership and Visiting Professionals programs, but are accepting applications for the 2012 Visiting Professionals Program until August 31, 2011. If you have an intern you’d like to recommend for summer 2012, they’ll be able to apply online this fall—the deadline is January 20, 2012. And don’t forget, we’ve made changes to the Intern Partnership Program to reduce Affiliate costs!

But don’t take it from me- I may be a little biased.  See how our Professional Development programs have benefited your fellow Affiliate colleagues and interns:  

Solimar Salas speaking at MCI's Topics in Museum Conservation lecture.

Solimar Salas- 2011 Visiting Professional from the Museo de Arte de Puerto Rico (San Juan). Working primarily with the Smithsonian’s Museum Conservation Institute (MCI) but with many other Smithsonian units as well, Solimar focused on the policies and procedures involved in developing conservation and research centers. She even was the featured presenter at MCI’s Topics in Museum Conservation lecture! 

Angelica Docog poses with the Honorable Sam Johnson (R-TX), Harold Closter, and Smithsonian Secretary G. Wayne Clough after receiving her Visiting Professionals Certificate of Award.

Angelica Docog- 2011 Visiting Professional from the Charlotte Museum of History (Charlotte, NC). Angelica met with more than 30 Smithsonian experts while working on her pan-Institutional project to learn all that she could about models of accessibility at the Smithsonian. Meeting with specialists in accessible museum design, cultural interpreters, community outreach programmers, and educators, Angelica was able to develop a network of professionals that will help her create programs and exhibitions based on the Smithsonian models she observed. 

Annette Fromm visits the Smithsonian Folklife fest during her Visiting Professional residency.

Annette Fromm- 2011 Visiting Professional from the Frost Art Museum at Florida International University (Miami). Annette researched Osceola-related collections across the Smithsonian Institution as well as met with many experts regarding sensitive exhibition development/design, including outreach into the Seminole community. Annette said of her time at the Smithsonian: “A number of insightful and valuable meetings were arranged which introduced me to individuals with lengthy experience working with Native American topics.” 

Intern Partner Marlina Reese in the Numismatics Collection at NMAH.

Marlina Reese- 2011 Intern Partner from the Women’s Museum: An Institute for the Future (Dallas, TX). Calling it her “dream internship” to intern at the Smithsonian, Marlina has been working to catalogue Confederate paper money in the Numismatics Collection at the National Museum of American History.  

Annette Shumway- 2010 Intern Partner from Florida International University (Miami).  Annette spent the summer of 2010 working on digitizing the Postmaster General Collection for the National Postal Museum. A roaring success story, Annette was hired by NPM to continue her work on the Postmaster General Collection!  

2010 Intern Partner Annette Shumway at the National Postal Museum.

Remember, the deadline for 2012 Visiting Professionals Program is August 31, 2011! For more information for each program and how to apply, visit the Professional Development Program page on our website.

July 23, 2011

2011 Affiliations Conference Wrap-Up

Thank you to everyone who traveled to Washington, D.C. in June to join us for the Smithsonian Affiliations National Conference.   So much happened in just 3 short days! We don’t want anyone to feel left out, so we’ve created a conference recap and included links to important information you may have missed. 

Click here to view 2011 Conference photos on our Flickr site and add your own! 

Welcome Reception in the Smithsonian Castle Commons. Photo by Smithsonian Affiliations.

Day 1, Monday, June 13: The 2011 Smithsonian Affiliations National Conference opened with a bang at the Smithsonian Castle.  During Orientation in the Castle Library, attendees reunited with fellow Affiliates and met new staff members from recently affiliated organizations. Affiliations Director, Harold Closter, discussed the advantages of partnering with the Smithsonian.  Click here to view the Orientation session PowerPoint presentation. 

We wrapped-up the first day with a Welcome Reception in the Smithsonian Castle Commons. Special guest Sidney Mobell thanked Affiliates and the Smithsonian for hosting Jeweled Objects of Desire, a traveling exhibition based on his jeweled art creations, which over the years has traveled to six Affiliates and is in the National Gem Collection at the National Museum of Natural History. Interested in hosting the exhibition? Contact your National Outreach Manager.   

Photo by tony brown/imijphoto.com

Day 2, Tuesday, June 14:  Focusing on education at this year’s conference, we invited Claudine Brown, Assistant Secretary for Education and Access, to be our Keynote Speaker. She spoke on the future of education at the Smithsonian, the role of partnerships in advancing the work of Affiliates, and challenged Affiliates and the Smithsonian to expand education and access. “At the Smithsonian, our collections and exhibitions inspire. Our people teach and our programs help students apply what they have learned. We aspire to be a veritable educational engine, using the resources of America’s museum to create a stronger, better America for our children to inherit. Through our National Outreach Programs, we will expand our exhibition-based education programs to cities and towns across the country.” Click here to view Claudine Brown’s Keynote Address PowerPoint. 

Photo by tony brown/imijphoto.com

Following Claudine Brown’s keynote, attendees were invited to brainstorm collaborative ideas in education in the roundtable session What’s the Big Idea: Revitalizing Education Through Partnership and Collaboration. From education technology to dedicated spaces, early childhood education to programs in your own backyard, there was ample opportunity to discuss the “big ideas” and then share them at the end of the session. What was shared? Click here to find out. 

The afternoon was filled with sessions introducing new initiatives, increasing membership, expanding mobile platforms and STEAM programming. We wound down the day with a curator-led tour of the exhibition Buffalo Bill’s Wild West Warriors: A Photographic History by Gertrude Käsebier

Click on the links below for the PowerPoint presentations from each session:

An Introduction to “The Immigration Initiative: Exploring and Presenting America’s Cultural History of    Migration and Immigration.” –Fath Davis Ruffins, Curator of African American History and Culture, National Museum of American History 

Building and Increasing Membership: A Museum-Wide Approach—Christina Di Meglio Lopez, Business & External Affairs Manager, Smithsonian Affiliations; Meg Colafella, Director of Membership, Senator John Heinz History Center

You CAN Take It With You: A Practical Look at All Things Mobile—Nancy Proctor, Head of Mobile Strategy & Initiatives, Smithsonian Institution 

Success with Science: New Approaches for New Audiences—Tricia Edwards, Education Specialist, Lemelson Center for the Study of Invention and Innovation, National Museum of American History; Judy Brown, Senior Vice President, Programs, Miami Science Museum. 

Photo by tony brown/imijphoto.com

Day 3, Wednesday, June 15: The final day of the conference may have been the most exciting of the three days! National Museum of the American Indian Chef Richard Hetzler started the day off with a cooking demonstration and book signing of his cookbook, The Mitsitam Café Cookbook.  After the demonstration, several Affiliate attendees shared how they use food to connect with their visitors and Chef Hetzler was enthusiastic about traveling to Affiliate venues for cooking demonstrations and book signings. Want to book Chef Hetzler? Contact your National Outreach Manager.

Following breakfast, conference attendees met with Smithsonian staff at four museums—National Air and Space Museum, National Museum of American History, National Museum of African Art, and National Museum of Natural History—to get a behind-the-scenes look at the Smithsonian loan process. Have a loan policy question? Contact your National Outreach Manager.

In the afternoon, attendees hopped on a bus and took a guided tour of the Anacostia neighborhood before meeting with staff at the Anacostia Community Museum to discuss museum issues at the community level and get a guided tour of the exhibition Word, Shout, Song

And to top it all off, senators, representatives and Capitol Hill staffers joined Smithsonian Secretary G. Wayne Clough and Affiliates at the congressional reception at the Rayburn House Office Building.   

Browse through our conference guidebook here. 

Have questions about any of the sessions? Want to contact a Smithsonian staff member from the Resource Fair, or another Affiliate you met during the Conference? Contact your National Outreach Manager who will be happy to assist you!

Here’s what Affiliates said about the conference: 

“It was positively exhilarating!”—Natalie De Riso, Community Programs Manager, Heinz History Center 

“Thank you so much for an excellent Smithsonian affiliation conference, we all came back full of ideas and inspiration!”—Carmen Fishler, Director, Universidad del Turabo 

“I brought back a lot of great ideas and contacts. I think the most important thing I came away from the conference with is a renewed feeling of excitement. It was inspiring to see all the good work people are doing both at the Smithsonian, and at all the sibling museums. Altogether an excellent experience and I’m looking forward to next year.”—David Unger, Director of Interpretation, American Textile History Museum 

“I thought it was an excellent conference and a great introduction to the Affiliates program.  Thanks for all the efforts everyone made to have a successful conference.”—Will Ticknor, Director of Museums, City of Las Cruces

 

July 22, 2011

Smithsonian Affiliates in the news!

This week has been busy in Affiliateland. From World Historic Site nominations to Civil War anniversary events, to welcoming new Affiliates, it’s not only the temperature that’s on fire this week!

"Crochet Coral and Anemone Garden" with sea slug by Marianne Midelburg. Photos © The IFF by Alyssa Gorelick.

Putnam Museum of History and Natural Science (Davenport, IA)Smithsonian Community Coral Reef to live on in Davenport, IowaREAD MORE 

Rubin Museum of Art (New York, NY)
It is a rare and wonderful day when The Observer can share not one but two news items from the sometimes-sleepy world of Tibetan artREAD MORE 

With the support of a three-year, $270,000 grant from the Henry Luce Foundation, Dr. David Jackson—the world’s foremost scholar of Tibetan Buddhist painting and a consulting curator for the Rubin Museum—will publish a new series of exhibition catalogues on Tibetan thangka paintings drawn primarily from the museum’s collectionREAD MORE 

Poverty Point State Historic Site (Baton Rouge, LA)
Louisiana is working with the federal government to put the Poverty Point State Historic Site in northeast Louisiana on the World Heritage Site listREAD MORE 

Prehistoric earthworks of Poverty Point

The prehistoric earthworks of Poverty Point in Louisiana and a collection of Frank Lloyd Wright buildings across the United States will be nominated by Interior Secretary Ken Salazar for the U.N. World Heritage ListREAD MORE 

Poverty Point Nominated for World Heritage ListREAD MORE 

HistoryMiami (Miami, FL)
One of Miami-Dade County’s oldest cultural institutions, has been accepted as a Smithsonian AffiliateREAD MORE 

HistoryMiami Becomes an Affiliate of the Smithsonian Institution, Claudine Brown, Smithsonian Institution’s Assistant Secretary for Education and Access, to present HistoryMiami with Certificate of AffiliationREAD MORE 

Mark the occasion as HistoryMiami becomes a Smithsonian AffiliateREAD MORE 

Northwest Museum of Arts and Culture (Spokane, WA)
Forrest B. Rodgers has been appointed the new executive director of the Northwest Museum of Arts and CultureREAD MORE 

Senator John Heinz History Center (Pittsburgh, PA)
History center helps antique owners put a price on the pastREAD MORE 

Civil War 150th Anniversary:

National Civil War Museum (Harrisburg, PA)
Without stars or bars, blue and gray flags dot the entrance to the National Civil War Museum – each representing a soldier killed in a battle the Confederates called Manassas and the North called Bull RunREAD MORE

To mark the 150th anniversary of the battle of Bull Run — the first major battle of the Civil War — The National Civil War Museum in Harrisburg set out blue and gray flags to honor all those soldiers killed in actionREAD MORE 

Greensboro Historical Museum (Greensboro, NC)
Combining state-of-the-art 3-D technology with American history, the Greensboro Historical Museum will offer a special program of some 170 images of President Lincoln and the Civil War eraREAD MORE 

Conner Prairie (Fishers, IN)
The magic of technology combines with the authenticity of characters in an outdoor historical setting to provide a truly unique experienceREAD MORE 

Smithsonian Affiliations Reciprocal Membership Program

Here’s a great deal you may already have access to: Paying for membership to one museum can actually mean free entry into several museums across the countryREAD MORE

July 19, 2011

kudos Affiliates! summer 2011

As summer heats up, so do Affiliate accomplishments.  Way to go Affiliates!

The Perot Museum of Nature and Science (Dallas, Texas) has received a $4.4 million gift from the Texas Instruments Foundation bringing the total within $29 million of its $185 million fundraising goal.

The African American Museum in Philadelphia was awarded $45,000 from the John S. and James L.Knight Foundation, as part of a community-wide contest to inspire and enrich the city entitled Knight Arts Challenge Philadelphia. The program entitled “RAAMP It Up Wednesdays” will showcase local artists by presenting commissioned dance and gospel performances through free weekly concerts at the museum’s Seventh Street Plaza.

The Putnam Museum (Davenport, Iowa) was awarded $35,000 by the Davenport Riverboat Development Authority for an upgrade to the River, Prairie and People exhibit at the museum.

The Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) announced Michigan State University Museum (East Lansing, Michigan) was one of 31 awards for the Conservation Project Support Grants. Michigan State University Museum was awarded $87,816 to rehouse 16,179 mammal specimens into museum-quality cabinets. In addition, the grant will fund students to assist with project activities.

The Chabot Space and Science Center(Oakland, California) received a grant worth $1.8 million from the Betty Moore Foundation, to develop the Bill Nye Climate Lab exhibition and website, designed to support the science education of youngsters.

The Connecticut Community Foundation awarded Hunt Hill Farm (New Milford, Connecticut) with a $10,000 grant for a New Talent Arts Initiative, to offer professional opportunities to young artists.

The National Museum of Dentistry (Baltimore, Maryland) has been awarded a Give Kids A Smile Champion Grant from the ADA Foundation, and an additional award by the DentaQuest Foundation to help provide every first grader in Baltimore City public schools with educational resources to enhance children’s oral health, and to ensure good oral health practices, particularly those from low-income families.

The Rubin Museum (New York, NY)  has been awarded a $270,000 grant from the Henry Luce Foundation for the study of Tibetan Buddhist painting.  The three-year grant will advance the work of David Jackson, a renowned scholar on Tibetan Buddhist painting and a consulting curator at the Rubin.

Four Affiliates were winners of the 66th annual Leadership in History Awards, the most prestigious recognition for achievement in the preservation and interpretation of state and local history by the American Association for State and Local History (AASLH):

USS Constitution Museum (Boston, Massachusetts) for The Family Learning Project.
Greensboro Historical Museum, Inc.  (Greensboro, North Carolina) for the exhibit Voices of a City: Greensboro, North Carolina.
North Carolina Museum of History  (Raleigh, North Carolina) for the exhibit Behind the Veneer: Thomas Day, Master Cabinetmaker.
Museum of History and Industry (Seattle, Washington) for the multimedia project MOHAI Minutes.

 

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