Did You Know That The Safest Indoor Space During a Pandemic is a Museum?

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Did you know that the safest indoor place during the pandemic is a museum?

Larissa Murray, Jeanne Fontaine and Maggie North are leaders of an extraordinary association of five museums.

Located in Springfield, Massachusetts, the Springfield Museums is a nonprofit organization of five interdisciplinary museums. Comprised of the George Walter Vincent Smith Art Museum, D’Amour Museum of Fine Arts, Wood Museum of Springfield History, Springfield Science Museum, The Amazing World of Dr. Seuss Museum, and the Dr. Seuss National Memorial Sculpture Garden, the organization has served as an educational and cultural hub to the region since 1857.

Through outstanding collections, exhibitions, and programs, the Museums seek to inspire exploration of our connections to art, history, and science while fostering curiosity, innovation, and intergenerational learning. The Springfield Museums has been accredited by the American Alliance of Museums, and is a Smithsonian Affiliate.

Kathryn’s father, Chuck Hayward, is an artist and also a facilitator for Living Whole Online. He has had a deep relationship with the Springfield Museums since he was a little boy singing in the church choir next to the museums. He later became affiliated with the museums by offering lectures about art and art history and running a global travel program for many years, which Jeanne now leads.

In the Museum School, we invite people to expand their creative horizons and nurture their passions for art history and science.
                                                                       Jeanne Fontaine

In this conversation, Larissa, Jeanne and Maggie offer perspectives about how people can have fun and learn by engaging with virtual and in-person programs offered by the Springfield Museums. Here are some highlights from their conversation with Kathryn:

  • What has happened with the Springfield Museums programming during the pandemic?
  • What is meant by a hybrid art class?
  • Why are the programs of the Springfield Museums especially appealing to families with children?
  • How has the pandemic expanded the ways in which people may enjoy what the Springfield Museums have to offer?
  • What are some examples of virtual field trips that are created by the Springfield Museums?
  • How are the Chuck’s Salon programs in Living Whole Online related to the Springfield Museums?
  • What is Zentangle and how can participants in Living Whole Online experience it?
  • How is creative writing offered by the Museums to participants in Living Whole Online?

Museums can mean different things to different people, whether it’s having a home for play and fostering early literacy or whether you seek out a museum as a source of solace and comfort, for reflection. It’s an inter-generational experience to be in a museum. We have also tried to work with the pandemic and create online programs as well.
Larissa Murray

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