Audience Engagement

The workshop materials provided here are intended to be used exclusively for educational, non-commercial purposes. Your respect of and willingness to honor these guidelines make it possible for us to more comprehensively share these resources with you on this website.

Utah Museum of Fine Arts

Color is more than an element of art: color defines our world, it evokes memories, it is both science and sensory, and colors have a rich place in art history. Color has the strongest effect on our emotions than any other element of art; it is used to create mood or atmosphere in an art work. Even more, color connects us to each other despite differences in race, culture and belief systems. Using VTS and other participatory techniques, this interactive presentation will inspire us as docents to bring color to life for our museum visitors with new meaning and understanding.

Presenters: Jody Andes, Gladys Webb


Montreal Museum of Fine Arts

Observe how, through docent training and rethinking of tour strategies, virtual tours have kept members connected to the museum. You will see an example of a digital guided tour and interact with workshop participants on their own guiding practices and use of digital tools.

Presenters: Margriet Zwarts, Linda Goosens

The Walters Art Museum

Explore techniques to become more welcoming and inclusive with your diverse museum visitors through stories and inclusive language. This workshop will help you consider how to find the right words and information for a richer visitor experience. A formula for creating information sheets about objects in your collection and a DEAI annotated bibliography will be shared with participants to help in developing inclusive tours. 

Presenters:  Sharon Edlow, Theresa Varipatis 

The Wadsworth Atheneum Museum of Art

Using the “window and mirror” metaphor, explore issues of inclusiveness and bias to connect more personally with works of art. Sample “windows” and “mirrors” will be used in this session as participants practice this interactive tool and learn how to apply it to their own interactive tours.

Presenters: Christi Moraga, Edlyn Blitzer

Evansville Museum of Arts, History and Science

Learn touring strategies through focus on materials needed to make the art objects. You will explore components of a particular art piece and where the raw materials came from. You will also learn to focus on how the same raw materials are used differently in different cultures.

Presenters: Nan Benedict, Susan Appel, Madeline Harris

Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art

Learn touring strategies and a useful framework to enhance questioning with adults. This interactive session and the tool to be introduced will focus on utilizing adult visitors’ curiosity. It will explore entry points for multi-dimensional conversations.

Presenters: Craig Anderson, Karen Skillett

Dallas Museum of Art

Open up your mind and body through a series of fun vocal warm-ups and basic improv exercises geared towards connecting you with museum visitors and becoming even more comfortable as the center of attention. These techniques are especially useful when introducing yourself and getting to know your tour groups.

Presenter: Kristin McCollum

The Getty Center

Discover a variety of activities to use in your tours to make them more fun, engaging, and relatable. Learn to use music, writing, drawing movement and critical thinking when interacting with museum visitors of all ages.

Presenter: Lee Rubinstein

St. Louis Art Museum and Cleveland Museum of Art

This workshop examines two different institutional approaches to telling the sacred stories of faith traditions across time and cultures.

Presenters: Bill Sitzer (SLAM), Barbara Gross (CMA)

Wadsworth Atheneum Museum of Art

Learn how this docent group was able to bring the experience of looking and appreciating art to more than 50 groups who had not been to the museum or are unable to visit the museum.  During the demonstration of this outreach effort, explore the process for engaging community organizations, participate in a demonstration of the tours, and see how to adapt “50 Visits” in your local community.

Presenters:  Beth Malley, Carol Urick

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