Georgia Museum of Art

The Georgia Museum of Art offers virtual programming for an immersive at-home experience.

Typically, the hashtags for international Museum Week celebrate interaction through artwork like #PlayMW and #ExploreMW, which were used in 2019. However, this year, the focus of the hashtags has changed to honor essential workers (#heroesMW) and to highlight #CultureInQuarantineMW.

The Georgia Museum of Art showcased culture in quarantine by posting photos of staff members and their children posed as works from its current collections on Instagram.

Hillary Brown, director of communications at GMOA, had her children recreate some of the paintings.

“Homeschooling while working full time from home is, surprise surprise, not easy," Brown said. "This was a good way to keep them busy and get something done at the same time and they had a lot of fun with it. They were also very serious about their poses, getting them just right.”

Other works were recreated by staff members of GMOA. Callan Steinmann, curator of education, recreated “La Confidence” by Elizabeth Jane Gardner Bouguereau. The painting features two women next to each other and Steinmann posed as both women.

In addition to recreations of paintings, Steinmann has worked on continuing programming online through the museum’s Art at Home series. The weekly series was created because the education team wanted to continue to provide art experiences for the museum audience in the Athens community.

Virtual craft recreates a GMOA experience at home. Typically, families and children who visit the museum spend time looking at and talking about art. Then, they will make something inspired by the art, Steinmann said. Now, families and children can find exhibits on the GMOA website so they can interact with the works before they make their Art at Home projects, which range from quick sketches to building binoculars out of toilet paper rolls.

For Museum Week’s Family Day, GMOA assembled free kits for the Art at Home activity and distributed them through K.A. Artist Shop. The activity was inspired by Victoria Hutson Huntley’s lithographs of wildlife in the Everglades, Brown said. For the activity, participants made animal masks out of paper plates and construction paper. They also made stamps to decorate their masks with, according to the Family Day activity webpage.

Art at Home kits with art supplies are also distributed through Clarke County School District emergency meal distribution sites every two to three weeks so the museum can provide those services to as much of its K-12 audience as it can, Steinmann said.

In efforts to keep most of its regular programming, the museum offers Morning Mindfulness every other Friday and Yoga in the Galleries via Zoom. Brown said the museum has seen higher participation in Yoga in the Galleries because people are now able to check-in from their homes instead of having to drive to the museum for in-person instruction. Both programs are also offered on the museum’s YouTube channel.

Lectures and tours can also be found on the museum’s YouTube channel, some of which give the audience a behind-the-scenes look at the museum they may not get on a regular tour, Steinmann said.

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