We have two Star York pieces on view in the museum. I discussed one in a previous post about Maria Martinez, and the other is located in our courtyard.
The artist was kind enough to give us lots of options for our gala, and we chose Summer Spinning because it connects with the museum's large collection of Native American and Hispanic weavings from the Southwest. After the gala, the museum will use our proceeds from the sale of artworks, such as Summer Spinning, to fund a variety of projects. These funds provide core support for the collection, staff, and museum upkeep, and they also allow for the museum to continuously grow and improve. Like many museums, we can only exhibit a small fraction of our collection of over 7,000 objects at any given time. We own some of the finest examples of Native American and Hispanic textiles as well as colchas, embroidery, and beaded clothing. However, we are running out of space to store textiles in our collections vault as we need another storage rack and the materials for wrapping and rolling (the best way to store most textiles is to roll them). We also need to rotate out some of the pieces in our textile gallery for cleaning and because exposure to light over an extended period of time causes fading.
Funds from our gala support projects such as this, and they also provide essential resources for the planning and educational programming that coincides with all of our exhibits. We often have school groups visit the museum, and the kids always enjoy making crafts similar to objects in the galleries. In addition, we are developing a digital learning center that will not only make our exhibits more interactive, but will bring the museum's collection to school groups that cannot travel to us due to distance or budgetary restrictions. Thanks to a collaboration with Artifacts Teach, our new learning center website (which is still very much in the works!) will feature high resolution images of significant objects in our collection that can be turned, zoomed in, spun around, measured, and studied. You can actually get a closer look at some of the objects on the website than you can at the museum! It will also have educational information about Southwest weavings, for example, fun activities, and games to make learning about our collection more engaging for the next generation. A portion of the proceeds from our gala will support the continued development of our digital learning center and the equipment needed so school groups can use the program at the museum. Star York's Summer Spinning will be on view starting this Friday, July 29th as part of our Turquoise Gala Auction Preview Show. Come see the exhibit and learn more about the variety of ways we support the Best Museum in Taos through our fundraising gala!