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Pathways To Success...
Building a Strong Community Through Education

Museum Exhibits and Conservation Support – Enriching the Community and our Lives

Burt Chernow

“Unlike the typical secondhand experiences people are generally afforded, the Housatonic Museum of Art offers first-hand experiences with “live art” that can be loved or hated or ignored and re-examined the next day. New and old art objects can speak for themselves on many levels and incite new discussions, appreciation and occasionally heated debates. This is one reason why many artists prefer to have their works in public rather than in private collections. It is also why our community college museum attempts to foster frequent encounters between new audiences and a wide variety of art objects.”

Burt Chernow
Founder of the Housatonic Museum of Art
(1933-1997)

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The Housatonic Museum of Art has accumulated one of the most significant art collections of any two-year college in New England. The permanent collection is valued at over $11 million dollars and includes works by master artists such as Rodin, Picasso, Matisse, Miro and Chagall. The vast majority of the art has been donated by patrons who intend their art to be seen daily by students, faculty and people from the community who hopefully will learn and grow from the experience of viewing it.

In recent years, the Museum has unveiled a number of important art exhibitions and hosted a variety of special events that have greatly increased the Museum’s visibility and have served to introduce a wide range of notable artworks to the community. As a result, the Museum rightfully has become recognized as a major cultural resource for the Greater Bridgeport area. The Museum is also lauded for its Peer Docent Program, a popular after-school program that introduces middle and high school students to art and art history, teaches them how to look at art critically and ultimately equips them with visual and analytical skills that will assist them in all areas of study throughout theirl lifetimes.

The Museum plays an important role in the life of the community: more than 10,000 people visit the museum each year. Were it not for the Museum, many of them would never have the opportunity to come in such close contact with so many valuable and diverse works of art.

Funding generated through the “Pathways to Success” campaign will assist the Museum in continuing to make programs and exhibitions available to Bridgeport area residents and visitors. That funding will also help to address the conservation needs of the Museum’s extensive art collection and support conservation efforts to repair the paper, painting and sculpture within the prized collection, so that generations to come will be able to enjoy the masterpieces under the Museum’s guardianship.

Campaign Goal: $100,000

Benefits to the College and the Community:

  • Maintains and sustains art treasures for posterity.
  • Improves an asset of the College and serves as a model on caring for art for students.
  • Provides Bridgeport children and residents with exposure to art, not otherwise available.
  • Allows the Museum the ability to build a base for future support.
  • Creates an awareness of the breadth of the collection to a broader audience.

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