April 2020 Virtual Vacation Recap


As I detailed in my last post, I planned a virtual vacation for the month of April, with a themed online activity planned for 25 of the 30 days. (I left Thursdays out since I was initially slated to go into the office every Thursday, but that changed and I ended up only working in the office the first Thursday. I’m now teleworking full-time.) This virtual vacation primarily involved visiting museums online, but also included other cultural offerings as well as reading up on how the museum world is affected by, and responding to, the pandemic.

I started out treating the endeavor as a regular vacation in the sense that I actually took photos and screenshots of the virtual visits, just as I would take pictures while sightseeing on a real trip. It wasn’t until Day 26 that it occurred to me that, rather than try to keep track of the virtual museums by photographing my computer screen, it would have made more sense to keep a list of links to the sites I perused.

Here, I’ll try to reconstruct a list of the “places” I “visited”:

National Book Festival 2019, Washington, DC – panel in which Valeria Luiselli and R.O. Kwon are interviewed by Aminatta Forna. (I had just finished reading Luiselli’s Lost Children Archive)

Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles, California

Irish Museum of Modern Art to be used as mortuary to cope with coronavirus pandemic (The Art Newspaper article); Museums scramble to document the pandemic, even as it unfolds (Art Daily article); MoMA Terminates All Museum Educator Contracts (Hyperallergic article); Museum as space of opportunity, creativity & care: A perspective from Spain (Art Museum Teaching post)

Asian Art Museum, San Francisco, California

Connecticut Science Center, Hartford, Connecticut; Science Sunday videos

Baltimore & Ohio Railroad Museum, Baltimore, Maryland; Facebook page

National Museum of African American History and Culture, Washington, DC; Facebook page

Shedd Aquarium, Chicago, Illinois; Facebook page

Old Korean Legation, Washington, DC

Pass the Song, Pass the Hat virtual concert recorded in various places including Northampton, Massachusetts

Glen Echo Park, Glen Echo, Maryland; Facebook pages for the park and aquarium

Washington County, Tennessee Archives; Facebook page

Schuyler-Hamilton House, Morristown, New Jersey; Facebook page (and link to “I Have This Friend” by Lin-Manuel Miranda)

NASA virtual visits to outer space; National Air and Space Museum, Washington, DC on Google Arts & Culture

Monterey Bay Aquarium, Monterey, California; YouTube channel

Notre Dame de Paris, France; link to ABC article with photos and explanation of what was damaged in the fire here (I also took a few virtual tour links that I can’t find now with certainty)

National Museum of American History; Facebook page

Why Is Washing Your Hands So Important, Anyway? (article in Smithsonian Magazine)

Georgia Aquarium, Atlanta, Georgia; Facebook page

The 8 Essential Things Museums are Providing Right Now (Museum Computer Network article) and In Substantial Shift, Museum Industry Group Pushes Directors to Break the Rules to Survive (Art News article)

Museo Larco, Lima, Peru

Royal Academy of Arts, London, England; Twitter feed; and National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma; Twitter feed

Kyoto Costume Institute, Kyoto, Japan

Prince George’s African American History Museum & Cultural Center, North Brentwood, Maryland; Facebook page

National Museum of Women in the Arts, Washington, DC; YouTube channel

About Laura

Paralegal with Master of Arts in Teaching in Museum Education, frequent museum visitor, based in Washington, DC. I care about what museums can do, both in terms of public offerings and internal practices, to make the world a better place. I blog about museum education ("informed"), the social work of museums ("humane"), and visitor experience ("citizenry").
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