Arts and Entertainment

New York museum director to meet with locals, discuss creation of accredited art museum on San Juan

Dr. Annette Blaugrund, director of the National Academy Museum and School of Fine Arts in New York, will meet with trustees of the Westcott Bay Institute and the Visual Arts Museum June 14 to discuss issues related to creating an accredited art museum on San Juan Island.

The meeting will be held 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. in the San Juan Island Library conference room.

Present will be the advisers, directors and trustees of the Visual Arts Museum of the San Juans and Westcott Bay Institute. Among those participating will be Victoria Compton, executive director of Westcott Bay Institute.

Westcott Bay Institute operates Westcott Bay Sculpture Park and the unaccredited Island Museum of Art.

The Visual Arts Museum of the San Juans has proposed building an accredited arts museum in Friday Harbor, and has developed relationships with other museums toward that goal.

With recent changes in the leadership of both arts organizations, an opportunity has opened for both entities to explore working together in a formal way, organization leaders say.

Building a formally accredited museum requires satisfying certain standards, including levels of competence and physical security. Once accredited, a museum can host international-level exhibits commonly found in metropolitan areas.

Blaugrund’s expertise is well known in museum circles. She will speak about several issues, including:

n What it means to have and be a museum eligible for accreditation, both artistically and financially, and the implications of going forward to build a museum.

n Budget analysis, including levels of staffing required and what structure that staffing should take.

n Successes learned by other museums, and what others did to get a successful start.

n Common mistakes and the best ways to avoid them.

n Fundraising models that have been successfully used in similar communities.

n What kind of endowment is necessary to have a financially healthy institution?

n Should the museum have a permanent collection or operate on exhibitions only?

n How two related groups can merge successfully.

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