Open Forum

 View Only

Illinois Association of Museums annual conference features "Cultural Placemaking"

  • 1.  Illinois Association of Museums annual conference features "Cultural Placemaking"

    Posted 09-08-2016 12:24 PM

    The Illinois Association of Museums is pleased to share information about our upcoming annual meeting: Cultural Placemaking: Museums in the 21st Century



    What is Placemaking?

    According to Placemaking Chicago, "Placemaking is a people-centered approach to the planning, design and management of public spaces. Put simply, it involves looking at, listening to, and asking questions of the people who live, work and play in a particular space, to discover needs and aspirations. This information is then used to create a common vision for that place. The vision can evolve quickly into an implementation strategy, beginning with small-scale, doable improvements that can immediately bring benefits to public spaces and the people who use them."


    In the arts and culture community, creative placemaking or cultural placemaking is the strategy used to invite institutions and community anchors like museums to play a larger role in planning and engagement within their communities. However, the people (members, visitors, stakeholders) at the museums are the focus of placemaking. It is about listening and responding to the needs and vision of the wider community when planning your institution's future. Oak Park embodies the idea of cultural placemaking with a progressive attitude and dynamic and diverse population that is constantly engaged in their community. It is a place of thought innovation and challenging ideas.


    In the spirit of engaging in a place and placemaking, we've spread conference sessions and workshops throughout the community of Oak Park, Illinois. We're encouraging our attendees to walk through the village and experience firsthand this lively community.  


    Our generous host sites are The Nineteenth Century Club, Wonder Works Children's Museum,

    Grace Episcopal Church, Frank Lloyd Wright Home & Studio, Austin Gardens, Oak Park Art League, Oak Park Public Library, and the Historical Society of Oak Park River Forest.


    Sample sessions include:


    Keynote Breakfast: F. Philip Barash, Creative director, Sasaki Associates. Landscape Architects Sasaki and Associates are currently helping Oak Park develop a wayfinding master plan. We've invited F. Philip Barash to explore how they're using placemaking to emphasize the unique character, assets, and creativity of Oak Park.


    Session: Regional Placemaking: Staying Relevant in Your Community

    Reimagining our spaces as community centers helps us find the crossroads of our collective culture. Presenters from local, county and regional level museums discuss ways they have collaborated to form cohesive connections and expand their reach in their communities through partnerships with other museums and organizations. Leave this session with ideas of how to reach out and draw in the local community.


    Session: Museum Campus South: Geographical Marketing and Partnership

    This session will explore the development of Chicago's Museum Campus South. We will cover

    the collaborative efforts of partner institutions to make our culturally vibrant enclave a destination for both domestic and international guests. Further, we'll describe the outlook for MCS with the prospect of The Obama Presidential Library on the horizon.


    Plenary Breakfast: Cesareo Moreno, Director of Visual Arts and Curator, National Museum of Mexican Art. Cesáreo Moreno has been the Visual Arts Director at the NMMA since 1995 and the museum's Chief Curator since 2004. Over a continental breakfast, Cesareo Moreno will discuss how the National Museum of Mexican Art explores community and place through its exhibits and programs.


    If you'd like to learn more or explore the complete program. Please visit our website:

    Diane Gutenkauf
    Interim Executive Director
    Illinois Association of Museums