By Rob Peoni @RobPeoni
A recent study in the Journal of Early Childhood Literacy created a stir in the museum community. The reaction was spurred by coverage in the press, where attention-grabbing editorial tactics and divisive quotes from prominent artists misrepresented the author’s conclusion as a call to allow children to run free in museums. This reaction comes despite the fact that the museum served solely as the setting of the research, rather than the planned target of its results.
Humor can get us through the workday, but for play, we need other people and the willingness to suspend all self-consciousness with them. Scott Stulen shares lessons gathered from Open Field, a three-year experiment in participation and public space at the Walker Art Center. From Live Action Role Playing to a weekly drawing club, to an Internet Cat Video Festival, Open Field is rooted in the idea that we need to learn and practice being together through playing, sharing, creating, conversing, daydreaming, and socializing.
$1 million grant from The Efroymson Family Fund will support innovative museum programs and initiatives through 2018
Indianapolis Museum of Art is excited to announce the inventive new ARTx series, made possible with a $1 million gift from The Efroymson Family Fund, a fund of Central Indiana Community Foundation (CICF).
The ARTx series was developed by the IMA’s first-ever curator of audience experiences and performance, Scott Stulen, and offers smart, dynamic and highly interactive experiences for audiences on the IMA campus and within the local community. The robust lineup features new public programming and community initiatives, along with enhancements to existing campus programs and events. New offerings such as Grown-up Summer Camp, Art Crossfit and Avant Brunch continue to strengthen the IMA’s reputation for quality experiences and intellectual rigor, while creating playful and unexpected points of access for a variety of audiences.
It’s no time to be passive, says museum’s first curator of audience experiences.
Not knowing how the public will react to one of his unconventional ideas is no problem for Scott Stulen. As the first-ever curator of audience experiences and performance at the Indianapolis Museum of Art, Stulen is paid to program events that are engaging, provocative and far from routine. Failure, at times, is part of the process.”You’re setting up a platform for something that could happen,” he said. “Sometimes it works, and sometimes it obviously doesn’t.”
An All-Night Projection Festival
By Scott Stulen, Curator of audience experience and performance at the IMA
Screens are a ubiquitous presence in our daily lives, providing a constant backdrop in public spaces and a beckoning distraction on our smartphones. Our screen-filled environment provides a stream of vital information, but also becomes white noise, ever-present but unconsidered. What if, for one night, our screens became more than hosts for endless replays of SportsCenter and cat videos? Imagine a night illuminated by 10-story video projections on downtown buildings; secret, location-based cell phone viewing parties; stadium scoreboard takeovers; and entire sports bars becoming art-house cinemas. My idea is to launch an innovative, flagship cultural event for Indianapolis that becomes a source of civic pride.
MUSEUM: Indianapolis Museum of Art (IMA)
POSITION: Curator of Audience Experiences and Performance (first to hold this title)
WHAT HE DOES: Leading a team of four, Stulen curates events at the museum, from traditional lectures to adventurous performance interventions staged across the sprawling 100-acre premises. Think of his position as the marriage of a time-based art curator with art historical training and a public programmer tasked with engaging audiences of all stripes. He started five weeks ago, so even he is still figuring out what he does at the IMA.
Scott Stulen Appointed as Curator of Audience Experiences and Performance at the Indianapolis Museum of Art
Newly Created Position at the IMA Will Create New Programming in Collaboration with Curators Across Departments
February 10, 2014, Indianapolis, IN— Dr. Charles L. Venable, The Melvin & Bren Simon Director and CEO of the Indianapolis Museum of Art, announced today that Scott Stulen has been named the Museum’s first curator of audience experiences and performance—a brand new position at the IMA developed by Venable to foster innovative and expanded opportunities for audience engagement. Stulen will begin on March 17.