Young Curators 2018

This summer UMMA celebrates the seventh year of the Young Curators program. Students ages 11-18 apply to be a part of this unique opportunity to get a behind-the-scenes look at the inner workings of a contemporary art museum. The Young Curators meet once a week for seven weeks to experience all aspects of the curatorial process from start to finish. Each participant first selects several works of art from the museum’s permanent collection. They then work alongside staff to research, write, and offer insights on their chosen pieces. Over the course of the program, students gain valuable experience and skills including research techniques, public speaking, and aesthetics. These talented youth offer visitors a fresh, inspired perspective on works from the collection.

The theme of the seventh annual Young Curators exhibition is PLACE AND PEOPLE: Expanding <–> Focusing. The students developed this theme in response to their four favorite pieces from the permanent collection. Staff assembled works in a large group and then the Young Curators discussed similarities and differences in the chosen art. Two major subjects emerged: place and people. The young curators decided to explore two tangents in the show: tightly focused portraits without reference to an environment, in contrast with natural, expansive landscapes devoid of people. Works of art were arranged with portraits on one end and landscapes on the other. The center area is transitional and depicts people and places through dynamic and abstract compositions.  The double-sided arrow icon used in the title encourages the viewer to move through the exhibit from either end, or to move through the space in a manner that is non-hierarchical.


Winslow Homer (American, 1836-1910), Eight Bells, 1887, Etching, Gift of Adaline F. and Caroline R. Wing