Dear Museum Members and friends,
Each monthly edition of Profile brings to my mind not only how much the world has changed but also how it’ll likely continue to do so for the foreseeable future.
When we closed our doors March 16, we’d just opened our first changeover of special exhibitions, and the new Museum had only been open after our renovation and expansion for four months. These exhibitions, along with works from the Collection, hung in darkened galleries with no one to experience them for nearly six months. While North Carolina’s Stay Home, Stay Safe orders and phased reopening kept us closed, they gave us the opportunity to reimagine what the Museum could be in these trying times. The Museum From Home initiative, virtual camps, and online programs that we developed afforded exceptional art encounters and helped staff understand how we can strengthen partnerships, be nimble, embrace experimentation, and adapt for the future.
We were enormously excited to reopen to Museum Members on September 9 and to the public on September 12. Clearly some things have changed, with new timed-ticketing, touchless payments, Museum Store pickup, increased sanitation protocols, required face coverings, and social distancing. Those with whom I have spoken, plus feedback we have received from visitors have been overwhelmingly positive. As we look ahead, the Museum remains dedicated to being a welcoming place providing solace in times of uncertainty; maintaining our commitment to diversity, equity, access, and inclusion; and making great art available to inspire listening and learning for all.
I hope that you will continue to support us in our commitment. A grant generously provided by a longtime foundation partner has established a new Asheville Art Museum COVID-19 Matching Challenge. Each dollar contributed this fall will be matched up to $75,000. Meeting this challenge will be essential to our future operations, and we hope that all of you will participate and invite others to join you.
We are looking forward to a dynamic schedule of special exhibitions, programs, and events this fall and beyond. Please join us often in the galleries and at home, virtually. While life has indelibly changed, our commitment to great art and to you, our Members, has not.
I thank you for your dedication and continued support, and look forward to seeing you at the Museum soon.
Pamela L. Myers