Going Green: Art Galleries and Museums as Community Leaders in Sustainability

By Editorial Team on April 25, 2011

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Join The Center for Green Urbanism and Authentic Contemporary Art for a panel discussion with experts in the field of sustainability and art spaces Wednesday, April 27, 2011 at The Center for Green Urbanism, 3938 Benning Road, NE, Washington, DC. In conjunction with the month long exhibition celebrating the beauty of planet Earth, Mama Earth, The panel discussion will address the role sustainability plays in art spaces and museums, as well as the steps needed to take to achieve sustainability.

Mama Earth is a visual celebration of the beauty of the planet Earth. The exhibition encompasses feng shui (literally meaning wind and water) – the Chinese art of placement to bring balance and harmony to a physical space (e.g. bedroom). Feng Shui is based on having good energy – called chi, and its positive flow. Mama Earth will allow give viewers a chance to see our world macroscopically – in the big picture where Earth is part of the solar system, as well as microscopically on an elemental level where atoms are the building blocks of earth and what makes up not only us, but everything else.

Join us as Stephanie Shapiro, assistant curator of the Tubman-Mahan Art Gallery and Authentic Contemporary Art explores questions about sustainability and more during this special panel presentation. The panel will feature:

Sarah S. Brophy, LEED-AP, Principal of bMuse

A consultancy committed to environmental sustainability in museums, and in cultural and natural resources. Sarah advises on institutional greening and provides planning support and green team coaching. She also creates grant-development plans and prepares grant applications for green projects and other organizational interests.  Sarah is co-Chair of the American Association of Museums’ Professional Interest Committee, the author of Are You Grant Ready? And co-author of The Green Museum: A Primer for Environmental Practice, with Elizabeth Wylie. In the last four years, they have published three times in Museum, the Magazine of the American Association of Museums, all on the topic of sustainability. She is currently advising the Detroit Zoo on its green strategy and implementation, and on grant funding for increased green practice.  Among other green projects she has conducted a program and operations audit for Connecticut Landmarks, and helped the Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum launch its green team.  Sarah regularly presents on sustainable practices for museum conferences and other non-profit gatherings.

Serena Bolliger: Director of Marketing, Green Living Consulting

Serena Bolliger is a LEED Green Associate with a Masters degree in Museum Studies. With extensive experience in museums and historic homes both big and small, and professional experience in sustainable consulting, she has been able to blend her expertise and passions to develop tools and resources for museum spaces eager to save money and reduce their carbon footprints. She is currently working to truly understand the potential of historic buildings looking to restore their buildings energy efficiently and with historic integrity by studying historic preservation and sustainable reconstruction.

Veronica Szalus, Director of Exhibits, National Children’s Museum

Veronica is employed at the National Children’s Museum as the Director of Exhibits where she is responsible for project conceptualization, strategic planning, art direction, exhibit curating, exhibit development, and green and sustainable strategies throughout the Museum. She is currently serving on the board of the American Association of Museum’s PIC Green Committee. Veronica is also an installation artist who has shown her work at the Montpelier Arts Center, Artomatic, and the Studio Gallery. Veronica currently serves as President of Artomatic, a large Washington DC based multi media arts organization dedicated to building community among artists.

About the Center for Green Urbanism

The mission of the Center for Green Urbanism is to create a business-friendly environment that provides startups with affordable office space and business services in a sustainable and energy-efficient green demonstration facility. We are located in downtown Ward 7, Washington, DC. Meeting spaces are available and Wi-Fi is accessible throughout the facility. The Center is a design model for a “living green business” in an urban setting, by decreasing carbon footprint – promoting home gardening, using energy efficient lighting and appliances, solar shade window treatments, a purified drinking water system, water saving devices and the recycling of trash and waste. Learn more at https://www.centerforgreenurbanism.org .

About Authentic Contemporary Art (ACA)

Curator Sharon Burton of Authentic Contemporary Art provides curatorial services and management of contemporary art exhibitions in the Center’s Tubman-Mahan Gallery; ACA was founded in 2005 and now serves as an alternative source for emerging and contemporary art.  Based in the Metropolitan Washington, DC area, ACA creates opportunities for art collectors and emerging contemporary artists to connect through exhibitions and other events. Learn more at https://www.authenticartonline.com.

About Stephanie Shapiro

Stephanie Shapiro is currently earning her Master’s degree in Museum Studies from the George Washington University. Set to graduate in the summer of 2011, her focus is in administration and sustainability and energy management practices. Stephanie is currently part of the American Associate of Museums Green Professional Interest Committee where she works to connect museum professionals also interested and involved in sustainability around the country via social media. She is a member of the American Association of Museums, USGBC-National Capital Region, and DC Preservation League. Her vision for Mama Earth stemmed from her interest in sustainability on an individual level and world level.