The Arts & Exhibitions Section acknowledges the important role art and exhibits play in engaging audiences through interpretation and programming for public gardens. Exhibitions are a public face of gardens and it is through them that our audiences can understand who we are, or in turn, place themselves in a global context. Public gardens are increasingly recognized as part of the cultural infrastructure within their communities, offering a set of multidisciplinary complements to museums or like venues. Engaging people through art and exhibit programs to inspire and transform the visitor experience allows public gardens to further connect audiences to collections, remain relevant to a diverse group of supporters, and to fulfill their missions in dynamic ways.
Exhibitions are successful if they are physically, intellectually, and emotionally engaging, as well as accessible to those who experience them. Garden exhibitions are complex, and even modest efforts require the time, energy, and expertise of many people. Gardens recognize that to be successful, exhibits must bring together all facets of an institution in order to achieve programmatic aims and fulfill a garden’s mission: planning; research; interpretation and education; collections; marketing; merchandising; design and fabrication, public programs; publications; membership; and fundraising among the many facets.
The Arts & Exhibitions Section will become a resource where public garden professionals can learn from each other by sharing experiences and ideas. A robust forum will offer a place for ideas, concerns, success and questions can be posed and answered. The Section will support the American Public Gardens Association and their mission to create a world where public gardens are indispensable.