The Exemplary Museum: Art and Academia

Exploring the unique set of challenges facing all art museums, The Exemplary Museum is the product of twelve months’ research into America’s leading art museums, and analyses in depth precisely how real success is being achieved. But - importantly - its highly perceptive guidance and conclusions are refreshingly relevant to ANY art museum in ANY country.

Focusing on "exemplary" museums - those which are models of best practice - the book explores the challenges and conditions for success for university art museums. Among the fundamental issues explored are: 

  1. How are these museums integrated into the lives of their users?
  2. How do users interact with these museums beyond the academic curriculum?
  3. What organisational cultures and systems best support these museums?


The Effects and Influences of the Great Kress Giveaway
Art Across the Curriculum Museum Art in Everyday Life
Challenges and Conditions of Success for Campus Art Museums


1: Acronyms and Abbreviations
2: Mission Statements
3: Why Respondents Became Interested in Art Museums
4: Interviews with Art Museum Directors
5: Educational Uses of Technology
6: Interview Questions

Corrine Glesne is a qualitative researcher, educational anthropologist, and author of Becoming Qualitative Researchers (Pearson, 2011, 4th ed.) In 2011, she investigated ways in which academic art museums are integrated into university and college life for the Samuel H Kress Foundation, embarking on a year-long qualitative study of the “exemplary” academic art museum that involved interviews with museum personnel, campus administrators, faculty from multiple disciplines, students, and community members at diverse sites.

Corrine is currently works as an exhibition evaluator, and continues to work with international educational programs, having research experience in Oaxaca, Mexico, the Eastern Caribbean, and Costa Rica. She is Professor Emeritus at the University of Vermont where she taught for 17 years.

Few can rival the Samuel H Kress Foundation’s ongoing commitment to academic art museums. Fewer have developed a deeper understanding of the central pedagogical importance of our nation’s academic art museums, particularly their vital contributions to interdisciplinary learning and visual literacy. The Exemplary Museum encapsulates the Foundation’s understanding and is a must-read for university and college trustees presidents, provosts, deans, and museum leaders.
David Alan Robertson, Executive Director, Association of Academic Museums and Galleries.

This perceptive, carefully researched book documents some of the best practices at leading academic art museums across the nation. Examining an array of institutions - large and small, urban and rural, public and private - it seeks to understand how success is being defined and how it is being achieved today. Campus-based art museums make enormous contributions to scholarship, education, and training; anyone with an interest in the role museums can play at academic institutions should read this book. 
Anthony Hirschel, Director, Smart Museum of Art, University of Chicago.

What a triumph! The vision, precision and outright care in this book is unsurpassed. It is useful and extremely well-crafted. Corrine Glesne's ability to listen and to also hear what went unsaid is the most amazing gift. I thank her for the excellent job and the steady direction her report provides. 
Saralyn Reece Hardy, Director, Spencer Museum of Art, University of Kansas.

Campus art museums are amongst the most innovative and dynamic of museums, and vital partners in realizing the mission of the school. This landmark book is an essential and inspirational text for anyone seeking to understand, expand, or enhance the rich teaching role of a campus art museum. 
Stefanie S Jandl, Co-editor, A Handbook for Academic Museums.

I plan to make The Exemplary Museum a centerpiece for staff discussions associated with updating our strategic plan. This is an important study for university and college art museums that will very likely have a profound effect on the evolving role of campus art museums. 
Charles R. Loving, Director and Curator, George Rickey Sculpture Archive, Snite Museum of Art, University of Notre Dame, Indiana.

A far-reaching survey of the state of academic art museums throughout the United States. Thorough and compelling… a fascinating set of case studies for thinking about how any museum can make education the center of its mission. I was looking to this book to provide fresh insights into the relationship between the museum and the academic community, and it certainly did." 
Art Museum Teaching.

Title: The Exemplary Museum - Art and Academia
Author: Corrine Glesne
Pages: 348
Illustrations: 22
Size: 203 x 127mm
Date: 2013
Editions: £39.95 [paperback] | £29.95 [eBook] 
ISBN: 978-1-907697-70-8 [paperback]

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