2014 is turning out to be busy as lots of cultural organisations are asking for training from lightsgoingon. Which is great, because I love delivering it; and learn tons from the people I am working with. It’s on the increase – many museums and galleries wish to empower staff through building their confidence, knowledge and skills to engage visitors with contemporary art.
The training I do looks at:
- establishing a baseline of understanding in relation to contemporary visual art;
- enabling the team – front of house, gallery assistants, volunteers, retail etc – to engage more confidently and in different ways with visitors;
- enriching the visitor experience – particularly for first time visitors who may be less comfortable with the gallery environment;
- exploring how to encourage open-ended dialogue and the right amount of information.
The training focuses on seeing visitors as active learners and participants, not passive, thus establishing a more confident audience for contemporary art in the future. It looks in detail at the artists involved, and themes around the work; then some communication techniques. It’s all then supported by a bespoke resource package that looks at ‘what is contemporary art’; and notes on communication.
Here is a short video made at RAMM in Exeter, talking to the volunteers I trained about how they have enjoyed putting the training into practice.