Affectionately known as “Weisguides,” WAM’s volunteer tour guides complete extensive training and lead hundreds of museum tours each year. Discovering new works of art, connecting with artists, researchers, curators, visitors, and each other, and engaging in critical conversations with people in the community (from school children to elders) are only some of the ways our Weisguides make an impact. Our fall 2019 Weisguide application is now open! We invite you to apply today.
But don't take it from us. Hear from two of our incredible Weisguides about their experiences at WAM:
Margo has loved art since her first art history course in college.
“As soon as the lights went off and the first slide came on, I was hooked,” she said.
With a background in modern, contemporary, and the Avant-Garde, Margo was first inspired to become a Weisguide not only because of WAM's campus energy, but also because of the multidisciplinary collaborations that take place between artists and university researchers. She appreciates WAM’s dedication to exhibiting shows that grapple with local issues, as well as our long tradition of employing and lending art to students. As if she wasn't busy enough at WAM, Margo also leads tours at the Minneapolis Institute of Art and at the Museum of Russian Art.
In her tours, Margo hopes to cultivate discussions in which visitors can learn from each other. Her favorite tours are ceramics.
“Most people have done some pottery early in life, but are not familiar with how ceramics has developed as an art form. That includes me!” Margo said. “So, I enjoyed learning all about ceramics and the history of the pots in this collection.”
A Weisguide since 2017, Paul is an avid museum goer and when he’s not spending time leading tours at WAM, you might find him in spin class or rowing down the Mississippi River, which is how he first discovered this glistening museum on the river's shore.
“I’ve always had an appreciation for ‘beauty,’ and I used to think of that as a synonym for ‘art’—and, of course, it often is,” Paul said. “But ‘art’ can have many meanings.”
Paul reflects on the way he’s learned to look at art differently since joining WAM. His favorite tour he’s ever lead was just last week! (He admits that often, his favorite tours are his most recent). The group discussed the life and works of Marsden Hartley, whose work WAM has an extensive collection of. Paul had never heard of Hartley before becoming a Weisguide, though he recently developed a tour that covered Hartley's queer identity in relationship to his works. Paul's initiative and creative energy are a signature of WAM's Wesiguides, who constantly encourage new perspectives at the museum.