More and more art museums around the country are developing interactive galleries in hopes of attracting broader audiences, especially groups and families with children. While some research suggests hands-on areas are appreciated by visitors, the museum field does not fully understand the value these experiences add to families’ visits to art museums and the ongoing influence of these visits on their lives. Frist Center for the Visual Arts (Nashville), High Museum of Art (Atlanta), and Speed Art Museum (Louisville) decided to partner together and undertake a three-year study to address this gap. The goal was to better understand what intergenerational groups do during their visits and what they value about their experiences, particularly as they relate to the interactive galleries in art museums.

The first steps in the research project were to conduct a web survey of practitioners in the field and complete a literature review to help frame the research questions and inform the research components. The Literature Review is included here in summary and full length.

Our findings and the process are shared in Research. If you are interested in planning a family gallery space in your institution and would like some practical advice and resources, look in Planning Family Galleries.


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