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Get In On Baltimore's Museums This Fall

Jacqueline Trescott reports (Art Museums In Baltimore To Drop Fees, June 1) on this lovely June day in the Washington Post that the art museums of Charm City will soon be open free of charge to visitors:

The Baltimore Museum of Art and the Walters Art Museum announced yesterday that both museums are eliminating admission fees, a step made possible by an $800,000 gift from the city and county. Anne Arundel County also gave each museum $30,000 for the effort. Free admission starts Oct. 1 and marks a return to a time 24 years ago when it didn't cost anything to get into the two museums. In recent years, they charged $10. The directors acknowledge they are taking a risk in financially tight times, but said they wanted to make the museums cultural destinations for locals and out-of-towners, as well as to increase diversity. "We wanted to do something innovative," said Gary Vikan, director of the Walters Art Museum.
As someone who is utterly spoiled by living in Washington, where the Smithsonian museums are all free of charge, I have to say that I think free admission, or at least the possibility of free admission (as at the Metropolitan Museum of Art) is the appropriate way to make art available to all. Unfortunately, the American Visionary Art Museum did not receive any funds. However, you will not regret any of the cost of your ticket to that place. Also, the Chairperson of their Board of Directors is a great lady.


Mark Barry said...

Your such a...nice person today! Hopefully someday AVAM will also be free. After a few days in DC I was spoiled as well. As for the Met it's a suggested donation. As an art student my teacher always stressed that artists pay 5 cents. If you pay more your not an artist! In order to not embarrass my family, when we go together...I'll pay 10 cents.

Now if the Baltimore Museum would only showcase some of the great art happening under their noses.

Anonymous said...

Thanks Charles for sharing the good news about AVAM. We have many days throughout the year where we invite teachers, students, and people of all ages to come tour or be a part of our workshops and events. AVAM is a livng museum that is as creative as the art we share. AVAM, like all museums are a work in progress, When all is said and done, celebrating the human spirit is an art in and of itself.

Anonymous said...

Dear Charles, Thanks so much for your suppport of AVAM. Like all museums AVAM is a work in progress. We happily offer many days a year where teachers, students and folks of all ages are welcomed free of charge to tour the exhibit, attend workshops and events. The museum celebrates the human sprit and the art that is created from our desire to connect in this world. I invite you and your readers to come and visit us at The American Visionary Art Museum .
Best wishes,
Sandra Magsamen