Welcome, art lovers! Today, we’re going to explore the Hood Museum of Art, a vibrant yet underrated gem located in the Ivy League town of Hanover, New Hampshire. The museum boasts an impressive collection of over 65,000 pieces, ranging from ancient pottery to contemporary photography. Whether you’re a casual browser or an avid art enthusiast, there is something for everyone at this cultural haven. Let’s put on our walking shoes, grab our notepads, and dive into the wonders that the Hood Museum of Art has to offer!
Hood Museum of Art: A Treasure Trove
Nestled in the heart of Dartmouth College in Hanover, New Hampshire, the Hood Museum of Art is a hidden gem that houses an extensive collection of art from around the world. With over 65,000 artworks spanning ancient to contemporary times, the Hood Museum of Art offers a rich opportunity to experience and appreciate art. It is a treasure trove for anyone with an interest in art and culture.
The History of the Hood Museum of Art
The Hood Museum of Art was established in 1772, making it one of the oldest college museums in the United States. However, it was not until the mid-twentieth century that the museum began to build a collection that would make it a significant institution in the art world.
During the 1960s and 70s, the museum acquired several significant collections, including the Creighton Gilbert Collection of Native American Art, the Harrington Collection of Oceanic Art, and the Kraushaar Galleries Collection of American Art. In 1985, the museum underwent a major expansion, which allowed for the addition of more permanent galleries and increased the museum’s storage capacity.
Since then, the museum has continued to add to its collection, regularly hosting exhibitions featuring new acquisitions and showcasing the works of emerging and established artists. Today, the Hood Museum of Art is recognized as one of the leading college museums in the country and is a valuable resource for both students and scholars.
What to Expect During Your Visit
When you visit the Hood Museum of Art, you will be greeted by a stunning modernist building designed by Charles Moore and Associates. The airy and light-filled space is conducive to a relaxed and enjoyable museum experience, where visitors can leisurely explore the collections.
The museum has a variety of gallery spaces that house the permanent collection, which is organized thematically and geographically. Some of the collection highlights include works by Georgia O’Keeffe, Pablo Picasso, and Alexander Calder, as well as ancient Egyptian, African, and Native American art. An interactive gallery further enhances the visitor experience by offering hands-on activities.
In addition to the permanent collection, the museum also hosts temporary exhibitions, which showcase works on loan from other institutions. These exhibitions often explore thought-provoking themes and feature works by contemporary artists.
The Hood Museum of Art offers a range of programs for visitors, including tours, lectures, and workshops. Additionally, the museum organizes outreach programs, bringing art to the wider community. For families and young visitors, the museum has a range of activities, including scavenger hunts and storytelling sessions.
The Permanent Collection
The Hood Museum of Art’s permanent collection is vast and diverse, comprising artworks from around the world. The collection is organized thematically and geographically, enabling visitors to explore different cultures and time periods. Some of the collection highlights include:
- European painting and sculpture from the medieval period to the present day
- Works of art from ancient cultures including Egypt, Greece, and Rome
- African art, including masks, sculpture, and textiles
- The Creighton Gilbert Collection of Native American Art
- The Harrington Collection of Oceanic Art
- American paintings and sculpture from the colonial period to the present day
The Hood Museum of Art is a place of discovery and appreciation of art and culture. Whether you are a student, scholar, or general visitor, a visit to the museum is sure to be a transformative experience.
Community Engagement and Education
The Hood Museum of Art has made it a priority to engage with the community and provide education through a variety of programs and resources. These include:
Hood Downtown is the museum’s off-site exhibition space located in Hanover’s South Main Street. It features rotating exhibitions of contemporary art and provides a space for community events and programming. Hood Downtown allows the museum to engage with a broader audience beyond the Dartmouth campus and bring art closer to the community.
The Hood Museum of Art offers a wide range of public programs that are free and open to the public. These programs include lectures, concerts, film screenings, workshops, and more. The museum’s public programs are designed to engage with audiences of all ages and backgrounds, and to encourage a deeper understanding and appreciation of art. Public programs are often linked with current exhibitions and collections, providing additional context and insights into the works on display.
The Hood Museum of Art is an integral part of the Dartmouth College academic community, and as such, it offers a range of resources for faculty and students. The museum’s academic collaborations include partnerships with various departments and programs, enabling interdisciplinary research and teaching. The museum also offers collections-based courses that provide students with an opportunity to engage with objects firsthand and to explore the connections between art and their fields of study. Additionally, the museum provides research opportunities for students through its collection and archives, allowing them to gain valuable experience in curatorial and museum studies.
Overall, the Hood Museum of Art’s community engagement and education initiatives demonstrate the museum’s commitment to providing access to art and fostering a deeper understanding of its significance in our lives. Through its programs and resources, the museum serves as a hub for learning, creativity, and cultural exchange, connecting the Dartmouth community with a wider audience and a diverse range of perspectives.
The Hood Museum of Art and Dartmouth College
The Hood Museum of Art, located on the campus of Dartmouth College in Hanover, New Hampshire, is one of the oldest and largest university museums in the country. Founded in 1772, Dartmouth College has long had a commitment to the arts, and the Hood Museum plays an important role in fulfilling that mission.
The Museum as a Teaching Tool
At the Hood Museum, art is not just something to be admired; it is also a tool for learning. The museum’s collection of over 65,000 works of art spans the globe and covers a wide range of periods and styles. Instructors from a variety of disciplines use the museum’s holdings to enhance their courses, from exploring the history of art and architecture to using objects as a lens for examining issues of race, gender, and identity.
The museum also offers a range of programs and resources for educators, from pre-visit materials to professional development workshops. Through its teaching and learning initiatives, the Hood Museum is helping to ensure that art is integrated into the curriculum in meaningful and innovative ways.
The Hood Museum and the Community
The Hood Museum sees itself as a resource not just for the Dartmouth community, but for the wider Upper Valley region as well. The museum has formed partnerships with a number of local organizations, including schools, libraries, and community centers, to provide access to its collections and programs.
One of the museum’s most innovative outreach initiatives is its “Art for All” program, which provides free transportation and admission for underserved communities in the Upper Valley. Through this program, the museum is working to make art accessible to everyone, regardless of their socio-economic status. The Hood Museum also hosts a number of public events throughout the year, from film screenings to lectures and performances, to engage with the community more broadly.
The Future of the Hood Museum of Art
In recent years, the Hood Museum has undergone a period of transformation. In 2016, the museum closed its doors to begin a major renovation and expansion project. The aim of the project is to enhance the museum’s exhibition spaces, make the museum more accessible, and improve its overall visitor experience.
The renovation and expansion project is a significant undertaking, and the Hood Museum has been working closely with architects, designers, and other experts to ensure that the final result is a world-class museum that reflects the needs and priorities of the Dartmouth community. The museum is set to re-open in 2019, and the Dartmouth community and art lovers alike are eagerly anticipating the unveiling of the new and improved Hood Museum of Art.
In conclusion, the Hood Museum of Art is a vital part of the Dartmouth community and a beacon of artistic excellence in the Upper Valley region. From its innovative teaching and learning initiatives to its commitment to making art accessible to all, the Hood Museum is a model for what a university museum can be. As the museum prepares to unveil its newly renovated and expanded space, the future looks bright for this important cultural institution.