Sometimes a person’s relationship with the Asheville Art Museum starts early and stays strong. Intern Ivy McMillan is one of those people. She has attended the Museum’s Summer Art Camp since she was in first grade. “I’ve really gotten to know and love the art museum and the people who run it,” Ivy shared. “I definitely think that it helped me grow as an artist, because usually during the summer, you’re not really ‘forced’ to do art like you would be in school.”
Knowing the value of arts education, she joined the Asheville Art Museum as an intern last fall. She’s helped in several Museum departments but concentrated her work in the Museum’s Education Department. “For me, it was really cool to see the opposite side of it, because I grew up as one of the people that had these classes; now I’m the one teaching and creating the projects.”
The Asheville Art Museum hosts interns all year long – giving students valuable hands-on learning experiences they can carry with them into their future careers. Ivy will be taking her passion for art with her as she starts college in the fall, majoring in graphic design.
“The art museum summer programs helped me a lot,” Ivy said. She was particularly inspired by the downtown location as a child. Though she won’t be living in Asheville when the new Museum opens, she’s excited to see what opportunities it brings – particularly to students and interns – in the area.
The projects that inspired her as an intern are “the ones that [she managed] start-to-finish – come up with the project, get the supplies together, and then watch to see if the kids like and enjoy. It’s inspiring to see kids that are doing stuff they love – making whatever they love.”
One experience she’ll take with her is an interaction she had with a young student. Ivy said, “We went to a library program and did a still life of some flowers. One girl, she did a really good job – and it was super intricate, it looked like she was having a lot of fun, and she took her time with it.” At the end of the program, the little girl gave her project to Ivy to keep. “It was really sweet, because she said she loved the project.”