Cleveland Museum of Art “Home Is Where the Art Is” Provides Virtual Art During COVID-19


(Image via Howard Agriesti. Courtesy of the Cleveland Museum of Art)

As part of the museum’s ideal of benefiting all people, the museum has created several virtual events to promote art and safety.

By Mckenzie Uhrig, Arts & Entertainment Editor

Editor’s Note: This article is the first in a mini-series on interactive and safe activities people can participate in during the COVID-19 Pandemic.

The Cleveland Museum of Art (CMA) launched the “Home Is Where the Art Is” initiative to connect to people through online programs and events after the museum closed in March due to the 2019 Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19). 

Kelley Notaro Schreiber, CMA Communications and Media Relations Manager, said the moment the museum had to close in March, they began thinking of ways to keep the community engaged despite their physical space not being open.

The initiative includes a range of online activities, events and even challenges for every age and all levels of interest in art.

“Home is Where the Art Is” can be accessed using the ArtLens app, which allows users to directly connect to the programs and the CMA through smart devices. It also allows users to create custom tours, browse an interactive map and view the CMA’s collection of artwork. 

“The Cleveland Museum of Art’s mission is to create transformative experiences through art ‘for the benefit of all the people forever’, Schreiber said. “With this initiative, we leveraged technology to bring works of art to the community, responding to changing needs in new, enriching, and innovative ways.”

One part of the initiative is the studio programs, which are collaborative Zoom-based events where people can engage with experienced artists and learn new skills. Events are divided into the following categories:
children and teens/adults.

The studio programs are the only part of the “Home Is Where the Art Is” initiative that requires participants to pay a
registration fee. Participants are also required to purchase their own art supplies for the studio programs.

While prices vary depending on the event and on museum membership, the CMA offers
scholarships to alleviate some of the registration cost.

“On average, scholarships awarded reduce the total cost of the virtual studio program to 50 percent of the CMA member registration fee,” Schreiber said.

An alternative, free option available through the initiative is the “
Engage and Create” program.

According to the CMA, the program features creative challenges using household items, sketch challenges prompting drawing from inspiration and collection connections of visually interactive works of art. 

These programs and more through the “Home is Where the Art Is” initiative are intended to only be available through the end of 2020, depending on the pandemic and its impact at that time.

“Though the museum has reopened, we are continuing our popular Home Is Where the Art Is initiative and developing new and engaging online programs for people of all ages,” Schreiber said.