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The story of Halldóra Arnardóttir, PHD art historian

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“Sharing and learning from each other has been a key to change making and teamworking. Thanks to Meet me at MoMA, museums have increased people’s quality of life.”

My name is Halldóra Arnardóttir, a PhD Art Historian. From 2008, I have co-directed the project Art and Culture as Therapy for Azheimer in Spain and in Iceland. As a consequence of Meet me at MoMA, I initiated a similar -although contextualised- program in the Museum of Fine Arts in Murcia in 2009, a first of its kind in Spain. Later, in 2015, I initiated a museum program in the National Gallery of Art in Iceland and Reykjavík Art Museum in 2016. Before establishing these programs, today’s participants did not attend these museums but visited them without any direct objectives – merely to pass the time, if they did. Now, empathy is shown on all levels between the museums’ educators and participants with the help of the artworks. New bridges are being built and others are reinforced between the different actors. To increase the museum network in Iceland, I published a book in September 2017 where Francesca Rosenberg was invited and participated in a symposium to explain MoMA’s program in detail and train the participants. She showed an extraordinary way of connecting and drew out key elements to elaborate a conversation from the artwork at the National Gallery of Art.

Sharing and learning from each other has been a key to the changemaking and teamworking. Thanks to Meet me at MoMA, museums have increased people’s quality of life who suffer the Alzheimer disease, recovered lost memories and allowed the echo of their laughter fill their rooms. Now the aim is to reach out even further and create tools that enable museums to take their collections to day centres for more advanced individuals – they too need new bridges to express their emotions.

Read more about the variety of programmes offered by MoMA to increase the accessibility of the museum and its collections by reading the factsheet.