Georgia Art Museums Collaborate to Share Resources and Collections Across the State
1/21/2010Participants Include the High Museum of Art, the Albany Museum of Art, The Columbus Museum, the Georgia Museum of Art and the Telfair Museum of Art
The High Museum of Art, in collaboration with four Georgia museums, has established the Georgia Art Museum Partnership initiative—the first of its kind in the state that will allow for the sharing of resources and collections among museums in Georgia and the Southeast. The five partnering museums are the High Museum of Art, the Albany Museum of Art, The Columbus Museum, the Telfair Museum of Art (Savannah) and the Georgia Museum of Art (Athens). For this three-year pilot initiative, these partners will draw on each other’s resources for exhibitions and loans of individual objects, professional development workshops and consultations and collection storage.
“This new program will benefit the people of Georgia and will be mutually valuable to the High and its partners,” said Michael E. Shapiro, the High’s Nancy and Holcombe T. Green, Jr. Director. “Just as we’ve seen great success from our past partnerships with renowned museums including the Louvre and The Museum of Modern Art, we hope to create a full ecology of partnerships here in Georgia. Together, we will work to engage a wider audience with great art and educational programming, inspire collaboration and stronger relationships with partner institutions, and enhance art museums and their communities across the region.”
During this initiative, the partnering museums will not only draw on each other’s resources for exhibitions and loans of individual objects, they will also participate in customized workshops. Workshop topics will include fundraising, public relations and marketing, exhibition design, and collaboration between curators and educators. These meetings will create opportunities for colleagues to share ideas, receive feedback and relay successes. Directors and board members from participating museums will also convene annually to build relationships and foster collegiality among participating institutions. The Georgia Art Museum Partnership will provide staff members from each institution access to a statewide support system, which would include professional consultations and curatorial residencies.
Albany Museum of Art
The Albany Museum of Art began in the 1960s as the Southwest Georgia Art Association, obtaining its non-profit status in March of 1964. In 1980, at the beginning of a capital funds campaign for a new building, the SGAA officially changed its name to the Albany Museum of Art and in 1983 opened a new museum facility. Today the AMA offers as many as 20 art exhibitions annually, including traveling and temporary exhibitions of regional, national and international artists as well as exhibitions from its permanent collection. The AMA’s collection includes 19th and 20th century American and European art in a variety of media including paintings, drawings, sculptures, prints and photographs. The AMA also houses a substantial collection of sub-Saharan African art including masks, sculpture, pottery, textiles and musical instruments. The Museum facility contains six galleries, an interactive children’s gallery, a 200-seat auditorium and a studio classroom. The Albany Museum of Art is accredited by the American Association of Museums. For more information about the AMA please visit www.albanymuseum.com.
The Columbus Museum
The Columbus Museum, founded as The Columbus Museum of Art and Crafts, opened in 1953 as a regional art museum. Today it is recognized as one of the prominent museums in the southeastern United States and one of the few art and history museums in the country. The museum holds more than 6,000 objects that span from the Colonial era to the present and important historical and archaeological artifacts from the Chattahoochee River Valley. Of particular prominence is the American drawings collection, with more than 500 sheets chronicling the history of American art from 1750 to 2009. The Columbus Museum also has extensive holdings in fine and decorative American arts and regional history, including paintings, sculpture, folk art, furniture, metals, glass and ceramics. With nearly 90,000 square feet, the Museum sits on a 15-acre site that also encompasses an historic garden designed by the Frederick Law Olmsted and Sons Firm in the 1920s. The Columbus Museum, along with the Georgia Museum of Art, has been a major proponent of developing and sustaining the Southeastern Art Museum Directors Association, an informal annual gathering of directors of Southeastern art museums. The museum has participated in many collaborative projects since its onset, including the unusual partnership The Columbus Museum has always maintained as part of the Muscogee County School District since 1953. The Columbus Museum has always been committed to the lifelong education of the diverse community it serves. For more information about The Columbus Museum, please visit www.columbusmuseum.com.
Georgia Museum of Art
Partial support for the exhibitions and programs at the Georgia Museum of Art is provided by the Georgia Council for the Arts through appropriations of the Georgia General Assembly. The council is a partner agency of the National Endowment for the Arts. Individuals, foundations and corporations provide additional museum support through their gifts to the Arch Foundation and the University of Georgia Foundation. The Georgia Museum of Art is located in the Performing and Visual Arts Complex on the East Campus of the University of Georgia. The address is 90 Carlton Street, University of Georgia, Athens, Georgia 30602. The museum’s galleries and shop are currently closed for construction of the museum’s expansion. Events and programming are continuing while the museum is under construction as part of “GMOA on the Move,” a series of off-site events and exhibitions. For more information and event times and locations or to shop the Web shop, visit www.uga.edu/gamuseum or call 706-542-GMOA.
Telfair Museum of Art
The oldest public art museum in the South, the Telfair Museum of Art was founded in 1883 through the bequest of local philanthropist Mary Telfair. Since opening its doors to the public, the Telfair has grown from a renovated family mansion into a distinguished cultural institution boasting three architecturally significant buildings; a permanent collection of approximately 4,000 works of art from America and Europe, dating primarily from the 18th through the 21st centuries; and a history of dynamic educational programming, community outreach and exciting exhibitions. The museum consists of two National Historic Landmark buildings—the Telfair Academy and the Owens-Thomas House—as well as the contemporary Jepson Center for the Arts. Each of the Telfair’s three buildings is an innovative expression of its time, housing a collection corresponding to the era in which it was built. Designed in the Regency style by English architect William Jay, the Telfair Academy houses 19th and 20th century American and European art. The Owens-Thomas House, also designed by William Jay but notably different in style, is considered one of the finest examples of English Regency architecture in the country. In addition to the historic house-museum, which features decorative art ranging from the late 18th to the early 19th century, the site includes rare intact urban slave quarters and a lovely parterre garden. Rounding out the Telfair’s trio of landmark buildings, the Jepson Center for the Arts—designed by the internationally acclaimed architect Moshe Safdie—is devoted to the art of today. For more information about the Telfair Museum of Art, please visit www.telfair.org.
High Museum of Art
The High Museum of Art, founded in 1905 as the Atlanta Art Association, is the leading art museum in the southeastern United States. With more than 12,000 works of art in its permanent collection, the High Museum of Art has an extensive anthology of 19th and 20th century American and decorative art; significant holdings of European paintings; a growing collection of African American art; and burgeoning collections of modern and contemporary art, photography and African art. The High is also dedicated to supporting and collecting works by Southern artists and is distinguished as the only major museum in North America to have a curatorial department specifically devoted to the field of folk and self-taught art. The High’s media arts department produces acclaimed annual film series and festivals of foreign, independent and classic cinema. In November 2005, the High opened three new buildings by architect Renzo Piano that more than doubled the Museum’s size, creating a vibrant “village for the arts” at the Woodruff Arts Center in midtown Atlanta. In the past the High has partnered with some of the world’s foremost museums, including its groundbreaking three-year partnership with the Musée du Louvre in Paris and a multi-year partnership with The Museum of Modern Art that began last June. Additionally, the High has collaborated with institutions ranging from the Munch Museum in Oslo to the Museo Nazionale del Bargello in Florence on projects that not only enabled conservation and new scholarship, but connected audiences in the Southeast with some of the world’s great masterworks. For more information about the High, please visit www.high.org.
The Woodruff Arts Center
The Woodruff Arts Center is ranked among the top four arts centers in the nation. The Woodruff is unique in that it combines four visual and performing arts divisions on one campus as one not-for-profit organization. Opened in 1968, the Woodruff Arts Center is home to the Alliance Theatre, the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, the High Museum of Art and Young Audiences. To learn more about the Woodruff Arts Center, please visit www.woodruffcenter.org.
Photo courtesy of High Museum of Art