facts

What responsibility do museums have for shaping the public’s relationship with facts?

In March I had a conversation with an insightful colleague, Amy Boyle, an educator at the Guggenheim Museum. Amy suggested that open-ended interpretation might be problematic in a climate in which political discourse disregards facts, and candidates and supporters make up their own truths. I’m not sure I’ve captured the challenges and opportunities offered by this…

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Can what museums choose to exhibit or promote define the character of their cities?

Lately, I have been thinking about the relationship between museums and cities, and how museums support or impact their cities. As part of this exploration, I picked up Gail Lord and Ngaire Blankenberg’s recent book, Cities, Museums, and Soft Power. This book explores questions of cultural capital, and the ways in which museums wield power. The book makes…

Visitor at the Peoria PlayHouse Children's Museum, during the museum's first week of operations.

Why are children’s museums museums? – Take 2

As I emerge from the chaos of opening a new museum, I am still thinking about the question “Why are children’s museums museums?” which I blogged about in February. In that post I offered three ideas, which grew out of speaking with Barbara Meyerson and Elaine Heumann Gurian, and reading articles by Stephen Weil. In a…

By @10ch from https://www.flickr.com/photos/10ch/sets/72157615115577346

What do people think about museums?

One way to address the question, “What do people think about museums?” is to look at cultural references to museums. Museum professionals often make note of references to museums in movies. For those who want to pursue that line of thought, here is Huffington Post’s list of “10 of the most memorable museum scenes in film.” In these…