Illinois is under a Tier 3 Mitigation strategy in efforts to reduce the spread of the coronavirus. Indoor gatherings that don’t include those from the same household are prohibited. One northern Illinois museum isn’t letting this stop their show.
The Rockford Art Museum is now temporarily closed for the second time this year after reopening its doors this summer.
Carrie Johnson is the museum’s executive director and curator. She said the staff knew a second closure could be possible.
“We weren't fully prepared, I think we're in a little bit of denial, because nobody wanted to close the galleries again,” she explained. “But since going through it the first time, we kind of met as a group and talked about ways that we can still interact with the community.”
She said one way is for the community to download the museum’s free mobile app.
“You can search anything that we've done in the past, like Coffee with the Curators,” she said, “gallery walks from previous shows, artists' lectures, so there's a lot of content on there that people are able to look back and [say] ‘Oh, I missed that show.’”
The museum’s exhibit Rockford Midwestern Biennial opened in October. Johnson said the staff was bummed about having to close in the middle of it but says she's excited that people can still see it on the app.
Johnson added that the museum is also using its social media platforms to connect with the community.
- Yvonne Boose is a 2020 corps member for Report for America, an initiative of the GroundTruth Project. It's a national service program that places talented journalists in local newsrooms like WNIJ. You can learn more about Report for America at wnij.org.