How have the pandemics—one novel and the other as old as our country—impacted American museums? With doors closed and digital windows open, how have museums pivoted to stay connected to their audiences during the COVID-19 lockdown? How has the social justice movement and economic upheaval pressured museums to reconsider their operating models to better serve their communities? Lastly, what are the attitudes and expectations of museum audiences for their future museum experiences?
Bring your questions and share your hopes about the future of American museums in a post COVID world. Stephanie Stebich, the Margaret and Terry Stent Director of the Smithsonian American Art Museumand its branch museum the Renwick Gallery, offers insights from her journey leading a free national museum ranked as one of the top five most visited art museums (pre-COVID). She will share data from national audience surveys and address the controversies rocking the museum sector. Stephanie has mentored recent Columbia graduates on how to navigate the evolving new normal in the arts. Stephanie was interviewed in Columbia Today on the occasion of assuming her new post in the nation’s capital.