D.C. Diaries – Freer|Sackler Galleries, Smithsonian Institution | #4

       With week nine right around the corner at the Freer|Sackler, I have had such an amazing summer that I wish could continue past August 4th. In the past week, I have ridden Segways on the National Mall for the Smithsonian Staff Picnic, taken a behind-the-scenes look at the frame workshop of a local frame historian, and even observed the takedown process of an exhibit. While the Freer and Sackler portions of the museum both closed on July 10th until October, my experiences at the museum seem to continue to become more and more exciting. Out of all of these incredible experiences, my favorite experience as an intern this summer took place at a Sunday artist talk that I helped to put on last weekend with the head of public programs at the museum. The conversation featured Yary Livan, a master ceramic artist from Cambodia whose work continues to advance and preserve traditional forms of Angkorean pottery and ornamentation. As one of the few Cambodian ceramists to escape the Khmer Rouge genocide of 1975-78, Yary was named a National Heritage Fellow by the National Endowment for the Arts and has a number of works featured in the Sackler Gallery exhibition The Glazed Elephant: Ceramic Traditions in Cambodia. While I had written a short bio on Yary during my first few weeks at the Freer|Sackler and have walked past his beautiful glazed elephant every day, I had never had the opportunity to meet him in person until the conversation last weekend. In addition to assisting in the organization and setup for the event, I had an amazing time speaking with Yary and other attendees at the reception following the talk. Overall, the conversation was an incredible way to gain firsthand experience in the production of a museum event and even meet an amazing artist!




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