Museums10 Deepens Western Mass Cultural Life Through Creative Collaboration
Western Massachusetts is rich with opportunities for families to get out into their community to explore, to get to know the world better, and gain a deeper understanding of history. The museums in our region embody that richness to the fullest! Now in its 10th year, Museums10 can point to the fact that they host more exhibitions annually than at the Met, Lourve, and Guggenheim combined and house 1.3 million collection objects (equal to what you’d find at the Harvard Art Museum, the Museum of Fine Arts, the Philadelphia Museum of Art, and the Cleveland Art Museum put together!).
Who is Museums10? Ten years ago, 10 local museums came together to build a collaborative to foster greater cooperation. The hope was that by working together they could accomplish more than any could solo. During the past decade, they’ve hosted large joint exhibitions, worked with local organizations to create events, and built relationships with area schools to help make the museums part of children’s educational lives during the school day.
The institutions house treasures, from rare books to dinosaur tracks, to ancient and contemporary art, and each piece of work individually and collectively brings all of this to life through educational programming and the nearly 500 events open to the public that they host annually!
The Museums10 members include:
- Beneski Museum of Natural History, Amherst College
- Emily Dickinson Museum
- Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art
- Hampshire College Art Gallery
- Historic Deerfield
- Mead Art Museum at Amherst College
- Mount Holyoke College Art Museum
- Smith College Museum of Art
- Yiddish Book Center
- University Museum of Contemporary Art
This collaborative of museums is located in Amherst, Northampton, Deerfield, and South Hadley. Seven of the museums are affiliated with the Five College campuses, and three are independent. Together, they offer diverse exhibitions, collections, and programs that empower people of all ages and backgrounds to better understand themselves and the world around them.
At the museums, you have the chance to walk in the footsteps of those who’ve gone before, be they dinosaurs or your ancestors. Parents and grandparents can rediscover their childhood alongside your own children and grandchildren at the first children’s book museum in the country, or introduce your kids to Emily Dickinson and her world through a tour of her home. Families can enjoy a renowned festival devoted to Yiddish music, explore ancient and contemporary art, and meet the authors and artists who have inspired so many.
As part of their 10-year anniversary celebration, educators from each of the museums will be featured each month in Hilltown Families’s newest column, “Museum Adventures,” sharing the educational adventures awaiting you and your family at each of these institutions. They’ll take you behind the scenes, share the inside stories about events, workshops, programs, exhibitions, and more, all of which are happening right here in Western MA! Check back on the first Tuesday of each month for insight from Museum10’s collaborative museum educators and get an insider scoop to museum adventures in Western MA!
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Taliesin is the coordinator for Museums10, a collaborative of ten museums affiliated with the Five College Consortium.