The China Federation of Literary and Art Circles, organized by Tri-Way International Group of Falls Church, VA, recently toured the Walsh Galleries for the purpose of familiarizing themselves with community-based galleries supported by the government. (The Walsh Gallery receives re-grants of federal monies at the county and state levels, while Seton Hall University receives federal funding overall.) Greg Stevens, chair of the Museum Professions graduate program, and Jeanne Brasile, director of the Walsh Gallery and an adjunct professor in the Museum Professions program, led the delegation on a guided tour of current exhibitions and delivered presentations on, among other topics, the changing roles of museums and curators.
Brasile met with the delegates on Monday, November 5 to view David Freund's "Gas Stop: Culture" and Tom McGlynn's "Standards." She then led a discussion on contemporary curatorial practices in U.S. museums and galleries along with how the role of curators has transitioned over time. Notes Brasile, "I think the delegation was very interested in the shifting role of the curator and the recent emphasis on a visitor-centered experience. Another topic of great interest was the American funding model for exhibitions and programs. In China, there is broad government support of museums, whereas in the United States, institutions must do much more fundraising to support their programs."
Stevens followed on Wednesday, November 7 with a presentation on the changing roles of U.S. museums from object-centered to visitor-centered and the challenges associated with that shift while addressing various layers of interpretation and meaning-making through the perspective of the visitor.
The 17 delegates in the China Federation of Literary and Art Circles are experts in all areas of the arts including folk art, calligraphy, Tibetan photography, painting, literature and film.
Visit the Walsh Gallery here.