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Munson-Williams-Proctor Arts Institute celebrates 100 years of promoting fine arts

If you live in the area, you might take Munson Williams Proctor Arts Institute for granted, but what does it really mean to have a facility like this here in Central New York.

Posted: Sep 17, 2019 5:34 PM
Updated: Sep 17, 2019 5:43 PM

Art can inspire the imagination in the youngest of artist's, and it served as a catalyst for what’s inspired thousands of people right here in Central New York. The Munson-Williams-Proctor Arts Institute may have started small, but has grown to a world-class museum.
Anna D’Ambrosio is the President/CEO of Munson Williams Proctor Arts Institute. She tells us just how much they've grown. 

"The museum of art collections started with the collections of our founders, which included paintings and decorative arts, and it certainly has grown over the decades, and we have about 12,000 pieces in the institute collection overall."

Size does matter. Robert Knight is an Associate Professor of Art at Hamilton College. He tells why you can’t get a true feeling of what art is unless you experience it in person.

"To be able to see the texture, the scale, the physicality of it, the brush strokes, the markings, and then also the interpretation that the museum provides through both the didactic materials on the wall, but in this case also through talking with Mary Murray about the works themselves."

Whether it be abstract, representative, or something completely different, the museum provides more than just a place to look at great works of art. Emma Fighera is a Hamilton College Student from New York City. She explains what the museum means to her. 

"I think the experience of being in a museum space that is designed to showcase beautiful works of art specifically, has an effect that increases the sort of wonder of the works of art themselves."

Jesse Gross is also a Hamilton College Student. He's from Philadelphia where going to a museum is easy, but finds the same kind of feeling when he visits Munson Williams. 

"Art becomes this catalyst for self-expression, and so I think that without it we wouldn’t be able to kind of express the emotions that we feel inside of ourselves."

The Museum’s newest exhibits include works from the faculty at Munson Williams, and a display called Astonishing Brilliance. It’s a number of pieces highlighting the transformation of American Culture. That exhibit will run until March 15th.

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