The Curator’s View: International Museum Day

The Curator’s View comes from the desk of Linda Jansma, Senior Curator at the RMG.

This Saturday, 18 May marks the 34th International Museum Day. The entire month is actually set aside as one in which we can celebrate our collective histories by sharing our heritages, cultures, ambitions and dreams through what’s being offered in museums, art galleries, heritage sites etc. throughout the world. This year, the RMG is one of over 30,000 museums in over 100 countries on five continents that will mark a day in which we examine our place within our community and how we can affect change through our exhibitions, programs, workshops, art classes, and concerts.

2013’s  theme, which is set by the International Council of Museums (ICOM) is

 Museums (Memory + Creativity) = Social Change

 ICOM states:

This truly optimistic theme in the form of an equation dynamically gathers several concepts that are essential to define what a museum is today, highlighting the universal nature of those institutions and their positive influence on society.

Harrington

Currently, we have Richard Harrington: Arctic Photographer installed in our Alexandra Luke I Gallery space. Large-scale black and white photographs of Inuit from the 1950’s showing beautiful, yet, at times, disturbing images. Interestingly, these arresting photographs affected change once viewed in the south. Government assistance was initiated to help relieve some of the suffering that people in the North were experiencing at that time. Harrington, through his creativity, affected social change. The accompanying sculpture by Charlie Sivuarapik provides both critical context and dialogue between a non-Inuit photographer and an Inuit carver who mediates, on a much more personal level, his experience of the North.

Oshawa Art Association Opening

Oshawa Art Association Opening

 

In other spaces we share riches from our permanent collection, a collection that is held in trust for future generations. And in yet another gallery, we are hosting the annual juried exhibition of the Oshawa Art Association. 250 people crowded into the gallery on the opening evening to celebrate the talent found within our own community. And, of course, that’s not all—our Imagination Station, CONTACT photography festivalcontribution with the work of Tom Ridout, and collaboration with local seniors to produce an exhibition showing the intersection of our past and present that points towards our future.

Tour Group

Tour Group

As the Senior Curator of the RMG, I feel honoured to be part of a team that is passionate about sharing both Memories and Creativity through art, music, lectures, workshops, art classes, and more.

I hope you can join thousands who will walk into one of those 30,000 museums and galleries on Saturday. There is so much to celebrate!

Free Family Programming for 2013

Happy New Year!

It isn’t an overstatement to say that in 2013 the RMG has big plans to expand our programming to include lots of new free opportunities for families to engage with art. We love our community and we know that families work hard all week and want to hang out on the weekend and have quality family time. We’re hoping that in 2013 you’ll choose the RMG once a month as a place to learn, connect, and communicate with your family through the creative arts.
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In 2012 we launched the incredibly successful OPG Second Sundays program. It’s a free art workshop series on the second Sunday of each month, sponsored by Ontario Power Generation. We had a great response and held many jam-packed art workshops. Due to popular demand, we’re expanding that program this year so that registration is no longer required, and all are welcome! All families should drop-in between 1 and 3pm on the Second Sunday of each month to work with gallery staff on guided art projects with themes celebrating the Lunar New Year as well as our many exhibitions.

Check out the OPG Second Sundays Schedule here.

ImageWe’re also introducing a new space in the gallery that is dedicated to families who want to visit the exhibitions with kids, and provide a chance for them to play, learn, and be inspired by art. Linger in the new Imagination Station! This space is currently being transformed into a family-friendly area with seating, books, toys, craft supplies, and cool interactive tools that will inspire, educate, and engage kids of all ages and abilities. The Imagination Station is launching in February, with an opening party on Family Day, Monday, 18 February. We are opening on Family Day for the first time in 2013 and are offering a free program to families. Come check out what we’re up to from 1-3pm. Enjoy light refreshments and a chance to try out the new Imagination Station (we’re calling it iStation for short!) The following weekend, we begin the regular iStation schedule, with the space being managed by trained educational volunteers who will help manage and guide craft projects, every Saturday and Sunday. 

You might think that was all we planned to offer in early 2013…but you’d be wrong! We’re also hosting a Festival of Colours celebration for families on Sunday 24 March. Phew!

ImageIf you’ve ever considered enrolling kids in our PA Day Camps, March Break Camps or Summer Camps, these free family sessions will help familiarize you and your kids with staff and the facility, so that the transition to full day camps is easy and exciting.

The RMG’s staff and volunteers are looking forward to meeting new families and connecting in new ways our community. If you have any questions about our free family programming, do not hesitate to connect with us. Email us at communications@rmg.on.ca or drop us a line on facebook at www.facebook.com/theRMG