AKMA Focuses on Indigenous Art for Their Second Slow Art Day

For their second Slow Art Day, the Albrecht Kemper Museum of Art (AKMA) in St. Joseph, Missouri, focused on three works in their collection which highlight Indigenous artwork.

Slow Art Day participants Ethan and Rick looking at War Party Pictograph by Unknown Sioux Artist.

Hosts Jill Carlson, AKMA Marketing & Communications Manager, and Amber Wilcox, AKMA Event Manager, invited participants to look at three works of art for 10 minutes. Afterwards, they facilitated an open group discussion for 15 minutes. They then pointed out contextual information about the pieces and how they were acquired.

Paul Pletka (American, b. 1946), I Hear Everything, I Am the Crow, 1990, Acrylic on canvas
Fritz Scholder (American/Native American – La Jolla Band of Luiseño Indians, 1937 – 2005), Bicentennial Indian, 1975, Lithograph
Unknown Sioux Artist, War Party Pictograph, 1870 – 1900, Pigment on muslin

The event was featured on the museum’s Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter feeds.

Facebook banner for the event

The staff enjoyed being able to engage and customize the experience based on what participants saw and said, reporting that this kind of individual immersion was “exactly what we all needed.”

Staff member Amber and visitor Ethan looking at artwork Bicentennial Indian by Fritz Scholder. This work is located on the newly installed “Salon Wall” at the entrance of the building.

We can’t wait to see what the Albrecht Kemper Museum of Art decides to do for Slow Art Day 2023!

– Phyl, Ashley, Johanna, Jessica Jane, and Robin

Albrecht-Kemper Museum of Art Hosts First Slow Art Day

For their first Slow Art Day, the Albrecht-Kemper Museum of Art (AKMA), in St Joseph, Missouri, invited visitors to slowly look at three works of art:

  • Frederick Judd Waugh, “Ladies Having Tea,” 1890. Oil on canvas.
  • Emily Dubowski, “Sunday Visit,” 1972. Acrylic on panel.
  • Luis Jimenez, “Eagle and Snake II,” 2008. Lintograph.

The museum had planned for participants to look at these three works of art for 10 minutes each, then meet to discuss the experience for 45 minutes together with a docent. However, circumstances caused them to quickly change their strategy.

First, many of the volunteer docents decided to self-isolate due to the pandemic, so at the last minute Jill Carlson, Marketing & Communications Manager, and her partner decided to lead the event. Fortunately, Carlson had previously participated in a Slow Art Day at BOZAR in Brussels a few years ago. That experience had inspired her to design the event at AKMA and made it easier for her to jump in and host the day.

It also likely made it easier for her to contend with the second change: a group of prom-going teenagers and their families showed up. For this tuxedo- and ballgown-clad audience, Carlson redesigned Slow Art Day on the fly and ended up giving brief information and suggestions for slow looking in front of each artwork. And the teenagers loved it (and we know how hard it can be to engage teenagers).

We’ll also note that Carlson and her team did a good job marketing Slow Art Day. In addition to the museum’s calendar of events, they advertised on their Facebook and Instagram pages and generated coverage in two local news outlets – The Savannah Reporter and Flatland (perhaps this is how the prom goers ended up coming).

They also created a simple brochure directing participants to the three artworks (see below).

AKMA’s advertisment of the Slow Art Day event

At Slow Art Day HQ we are really impressed with Carlson and her team’s commitment to Slow Art Day and to pivoting quickly at the last moment.

We look forward to what they come up with for Slow Art Day in 2022.

– Johanna, Jessica, Ashley and Phyl