Wriston Art Center Galleries Mission

The mission of the Wriston Art Center Galleries is to strengthen Lawrence University's liberal arts education and outreach by stimulating thought, inspiring creativity, providing insight, and inviting contemplation by students, faculty, staff, and the community through interaction with the original works of art and cultural objects that the galleries exhibit and collect.

To realize this mission, the Wriston Art Center Galleries will:
Maintain, research, interpret, exhibit, preserve, and acquire collections in accordance with the best museum practices, focusing on work that directly supports the university’s teaching and scholarship.

  • Maintain and develop a collection of objects which are museum quality, have significant cultural and historical value, and are suitable for the educational and scholarly activities of the university.
  • Cultivate additions to the permanent collection with direct applications and connections to the educational resources of the university and in the galleries’ areas of greatest strength.
  • Provide opportunities for research, teaching, professional training, and creative inspiration, and contribute to an understanding of the place of visual arts within the university’s intellectual culture.
  • Collect important works by those artists whose lives and careers were influenced by their association with Lawrence University.
  • Store, install, and display works of art and objects according to the highest professional museum standards.

Actively participate in the intellectual life of the university and develop interdisciplinary programs to enhance the study and interpretation of visual art and objects for all students.

  • Present exhibitions that integrate knowledge and ideas from across the recognized disciplines of the arts and sciences pursued at Lawrence University.
  • Collaborate with students, faculty, and staff from diverse disciplines on exhibitions and programs that enhance the university’s liberal arts curriculum.
  • Encourage students and faculty to utilize the galleries and its collections as part of the search for knowledge and understanding and facilitate the study of artworks and objects as primary sources.
  • Integrate object study and gallery visits into coursework to enhance the classroom educational experience for students in all areas of study.
  • Research and interpret works in the collection and disseminate this knowledge through publications and exhibitions.

Create compelling educational opportunities for the Lawrence University community and the greater local community.

  • Assist students and faculty in independent research on objects in the collection, within the limits of the best practices for the preservation of those objects.
  • Utilize the collections and exhibitions to foster dialogues among diverse disciplines, cultures, approaches, and experiences.
  • Develop courses and internships in museum studies that apply a wide range of subjects and intellectual approaches to the museum space, while also building essential skills and promoting professionalization.
  • Provide the university and the local community with opportunities to appreciate, interact with, and understand visual arts and cultural objects through exhibitions and programming.
  • Serve as a cultural resource for the greater Fox Valley community.

Serve as a space for the exhibition and critical discussion of a mix of historical artworks and objects and works by regional, national and international living artists.

  • Organize a diverse range of contemporary, historical, and thematic exhibitions in a variety of media to enable viewers to understand and contextualize the art and visual culture of the present and the past.
  • Invite artists, scholars, guest speakers, and other professionals to campus to enrich the experience of exhibitions and expand knowledge about the collections.
  • Create opportunities for collaboration among artists, students, scholars, and community members on and off campus.
  • Promote a deeper understanding of the connections between the global and the local through visual arts and objects.


Adopted November 21, 2013 by the Lawrence University Gallery Committee

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