A graphic that says National Go To An Art Museum DayIllinois is home to a number of famous artists, including Donna Zarbin-Byrne, Teresa Cash, Tony Abboreno, and so many more. Nov. 9th is National Go To An Art Museum Day, a day dedicated to celebrating the talents of artists and content creators everywhere. More than 30,000 museums around the world participate in National Go To An Art Museum Day by hosting events and displaying their exhibits according to a theme that changes annually. Illinois museums offer a variety of ways to discover the abundance of talent in the state.

Illinois has over 1,000 museums. Each location offers unique accounts of not only Illinois excellence but also nationally recognized artistry. These locations can be found across the regions, and their displays demonstrate the influence of every corner of the state. The art Institute of Chicago, for example, is featuring Barbara Kruger, who exposes the power dynamics of identity, desire, and consumerism through animations, photos, and more until late January. The Krannert Art Museum at the University of Illinois is hosting several temporary exhibits that highlight everything from individual artists, to themes to styles of production.

Museums serve as educational outlets, in addition to providing exhibits for leisurely consumption. Museums capture distinct points of history and portray remnants of cultures that otherwise would be lost. Invaluable information can be extracted from the visual, literary, and performance art that these museums hold. Every piece tells a story about its origin, community, and inspiration.

From portraits to plays to novels, museums provide immersive experiences to anyone able to enter their doors. Constant challenges to the preservation and care of these collections pose great threats to museums everywhere. National Go To An Art Museum Day is a great way to encourage people to visit local art museums and generate opportunities museums need to achieve their goals.

The Illinois Association of Museums recognizes excellence among museums in the state. Though every museum is eligible to receive the great honor of being named Leader Institution by the IAM, a mix of both art and history museums can be found among the list of award winners. A full list of awards winners and museums can be found at www.illinosmuseums.org.

Museums, like many other businesses in response to the pandemic, are in need of funding, strategic planning, development, and exhibit design. Patronage to museums is one way to support these institutions and thank them for their efforts to protect the state’s most valuable artifacts.