Art Museums in Transformation

Source Organization: Pew Program for Art Museums and Communities

Author: Bonnie Pitman and Ellen Hirzy


07/28/2004 - The book--Art Museums in Transformation--shares the stories of exploration, action and ultimately transformation in a diverse group of 11 art museums. Supported by up to four years of funding from The Pew Charitable Trusts' Program for Art Museums and Communities, these museums pursued stronger connections to their communities through experiences with art and artists.

In working toward a visitor-centered vision, they aimed for sustained engagement rather than short-term interest. With their focused initiatives, they created infrastructures for successful visitor experiences. Long-term funding was a critical part of the process. The Pew funds allowed the museums to experiment, a rare luxury in the usually hectic operating climate of the nonprofit world. Receiving this support from 1995 to 2002, the museums were able to test and refine approaches and programs, which in most cases were incorporated into operating plans and budgets. Some initiatives led to the development of endowments; other initiatives have permanent physical spaces; and others are now part of the museum’s core program.

Download the extended book introduction from Art Museums in Transformation.

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