Bridget Grier

Making the Most of Your Summer Experience: The Importance of Flexibility and Adaptation

With the support of the Weed Summer Research Fellowship, I spent my summer in Washington D.C. researching the exhibition politics behind the inclusion of African American art and cultural history within the context of national museums. I visited a variety of museums and exhibits by and/or focused on African Americans to see how (and what aspects of) Black history are preserved, and how this manifests itself in the creation of a national narrative. After arriving in D.C., I saw the necessity of working directly with an art organization in order to gain real insight into the process of producing exhibits. I utilized my network to secure a research internship with CulturalDC; CulturalDC is a nonprofit arts and cultural development organization that “makes space for art” both in their own galleries and theaters, and in public spaces. I reported to the Director of Advisory Services, and spent my time researching specific art markets, and the economic impact of functional art spaces. I used this information to create a set of best practices that CulturalDC could use to develop and structure their own art markets. I faced ongoing challenges, but was able to work through these challenges with the support of my networks.