Options for Art Exhibit Programs by Religious Institutions

by an anonymous volunteer


TFAO editor's notes:

Readers of the above article may also enjoy the following resources from Traditional Fine Arts Organization (TFAO) and other sources.


From TFAO's website

Religion in American Art contains links to websites of organizations cited in this article. These websites, and others listed in Religion in American Art, contain mission and vision statements helpful to those considering establishment of an exhibit program.

Exhibitions and Planning, Organizing and Touring Art Exhibitions provide information on how exhibitions are produced plus other resources.

Museums Explained includes definitions of staff positions referred to in the article, plus other definitions and information.

Founding a Private Art Museum offers insights for those interested in establishing non-collecting museums as well as for museums centered around a collection.

Lending Art to Museums for Special Exhibitions explains needs of both museums and other parties considering lending art to a venue.


From other online resources

"Museum Strategic Planning, Part II - Museum Feasibility Study" and "10 Steps to Starting a Museum" by Mark Walhimer, from Museum Planning, LLC. Accessed December 2013.

Planning Successful Museum Building Projects by Walter L. Crimm, Martha Morris, Carole L. Wharton, from Google Books. page 174

Sample museum facility feasibility study RFQ: 2013 Birmingham Museum of Art Request for Qualifications. Accessed December 2013. There are several examples of completed feasibility studies on the Web using the keywords art museum feasibility study in a search.

"Using Museum Consultants" by Crispin Paine, from Association of Independent Museums

and these videos:

In Search of Culture: Birth of the Museum of Fine Arts [52:21] is a WGBH Forum presentation including lectures by David Dearinger and Hina Hirayama presented December 13, 2007 at the Boston Athenaeum. Both presenters are staff members at the Boston Athenaeum. [As of January, 2014 this video is not available online. Reference to it is retained in the event viewers are able to access it at a later date.]

Inventing Concepts for a New Museum [1:37:25] is a WGBH Forum presentation by Yves Abrioux, professor, English lit, U Paris VIII. On April 18, 2007 the High Museum of Art presented Yves Abrioux, professor of English literature at the University of Paris VIII and the Ecole du Louvre for the past six years. At the time of the presentation he served on the editorial board of TLE and was the writer of many articles and exhibition catalogues, including Ian Hamilton Finlay: a Visual Primer (1992). Abrioux's scholarly work informed his own landscape art, which has appeared in France, Germany and England. In the fall of 2006, Abrioux was a visiting professor at Georgia Tech's School of Literature, Communication and Culture, where he helped to coordinate projects between the High Museum, the MusÎe du Louvre and Georgia Tech. [As of January, 2014 this video is not available online. Reference to it is retained in the event viewers are able to access it at a later date.]

Artist's View of the Future of the Museum [1:10:04 ] is a WGBH Forum presentation by Jane Prophet. On April 4, 2007 the High Museum of Art presented artist Jane Prophet who, at the time of the presentation, worked across disciplines to create internationally acclaimed projects that have broken new ground in art, technology, and science. Her work, which includes large-scale installations, digital print, websites and CD-ROMs, reflects her interest in complexity theory, landscape and artificial life. Among her past projects are the award-winning Website, TechnoSphere, and The Landscape Room, an installation that combines photographs with computer-simulated landscapes. In October 2006, she completed a solo show at Paco das Artes, which coincided with the Sao Paulo Biennale. [As of January, 2014 this video is not available online. Reference to it is retained in the event viewers are able to access it at a later date.]

Selective Attention: Neuroscience and the Art Museum [1:12:09 ] is a WGBH Forum presentation by Barbara Stafford, professor, art history, U Chicago. On March 22, 2007 the High Museum of Art presented Barbara Stafford who, at the time of the presentation, was William B. Ogden Distinguished Service Professor of the University of Chicago's Department of Art History. She discussed the relationship between neuroscience and art museums. Stafford's recent essays focus on how developments in brain science are informing our assumptions about perception, emotion, sensation, and mental imagery. Stafford is the writer of many books, including Body Criticism: Imaging the Unseen in Enlightenment Art and Medicine (1991), Artful Science: Enlightenment, Entertainment, and the Eclipse of Visual Education (1994), and Visual Analogy: Consciousness as the Art of Connecting (1999). [As of January, 2014 this video is not available online. Reference to it is retained in the event viewers are able to access it at a later date.]



There are several books designed to help persons plan and organize new museums. Here are some titles:

Crafting Effective Mission and Vision Statements by Emil Angelica, 2001 (67 pages)

Managing New Museums: A Guide to Good Practice by Tim Ambrose, HMSO (Edinburgh), 1993 (141 pages)

The Manual of Museum Planning by Gail Dexter Lord and Barry Lord. Published 2000 by Rowman Altamira. 480 pages. ISBN:0742504069. Google Books says: n essential resource for all museum professionals as well as trustees, architects, designers, and government agencies involved with the dynamic world of museums and galleries." Google Books offers an online Limited Preview. (right: front cover, The Manual of Museum Planning. Image courtesy Amazon.com)

Museum Job Descriptions and Organizational Charts by Mary Lister, 1999 (400 pages.) Sample job descriptions for various museum positions and sample charts to show flow of authority.

Organizing Your Museum: The Essentials (American Association of Museums) "Practical information and advice that trustees, volunteers, or staff need to know about starting a museum and successfully managing every stage of its development. This report addresses the questions you will need to consider to realistically assess the museum's chances for success. Included are sample bylaws, mission statements, long-range plans, job descriptions, collections management policies, and readings." - AAM (left: front cover, Organizing Your Museum: The Essentials. Image courtesy Google Books)

Starting Right: A Basic Guide to Museum Planning, 2nd edition by Gerald George (AltaMira Press / American Association for State & Local History) "For anyone not yet in the museum business, Starting Right will be a revelation. . . . This second edition of a fine introductory handbook answers questions many neophytes will not yet have considered. . . . This is a splendid book, enjoyable enough to take along to Starbucks for a lingering coffee. The chapters are short, and each provided with a useful reading list. The index is thorough, the illustrations relevant. Although the title suggests that the readers will be behind the scenes for the first time, many others will find it constructive."- Museline. Google Books offers an online Limited Preview. (right: front cover, Starting Right: A Basic Guide to Museum Planning, 2nd edition. Image courtesy Google Books)

Strategic Planning for Nonprofit Organizations: A Practical Guide and Workbook by Michael Allison, 1997 (287 pages)

Strategic Planning Workbook for Nonprofit Organizations by Bryan W. Barry, 1995 (72+ pages). A workbook for developing strategic plans.

Towards a New Museum by Victoria Newhouse. 208 pages. Publisher: Monacelli (March 1, 1998). ISBN-10: 1885254601. ISBN-13: 978-1885254603. Amazon.com Review: "Should art museums be designed to surprise and delight or to instruct and uplift? Should the museum building be a temple of art or an entertainment complex? Architectural historian Victoria Newhouse considers these and other questions about museums in her book Towards a New Museum. Newhouse examines dozens of art museums built during the 1980s and 1990s and describes how the buildings fit into the history of ideas about the proper function of museums. Some museums are like cabinets of curiosities, a hodgepodge of items the collector assembles to delight viewers. Other designers of museums strive to provide a neutral environment that does not distract viewers from the art. However, some architects believe that hanging paintings on white walls in galleries separates the art from its context. Architects and artists have grappled with these ideas and created some stunning and outlandish museums in recent years. Newhouse describes the sinuous, titanium-coated new Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao, Spain, and the fractured forms of the Fredrick R. Weisman Art Museum in Minneapolis. She writes about the artist Donald Judd, who bought most of Marfa, Texas, and made it a museum. These are bold and sometimes beautiful museums. Newhouse wisely includes plenty of good pictures and diagrams of each building. In different segments of the book, Newhouse discusses: private museums, museums that function as temples of art, museums devoted to one artist, and museums designed by artists. She also devotes a chapter to the unfortunate impact of museum politics on design. This chapter, "Wings That Don't Fly," illustrates some of the more vivid design disasters in recent history, including the "toilet tank" addition to the Guggenheim in New York. Art historians, architects, and people who are connected to museums will find this book an instructive, thoughtful overview of what's going on with museums today. --Jill Marquis" (text courtesy of Amazon.com)


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