shop
about
seasons
join us
blog
blog
shop
about
join us
seasons

Devon Rose Turner (Communications Manager, GEM; Outreach Coordinator, The Big Draw)

Museum, art, and heritage: building an engaging future

transcript s.3 ep.4

SPEAKERS

Devon Rose Turner, Eleni Neni Veltanioti, James Harrod

James Harrod

Hi everyone. Just a quick message to let you know that this episode was recorded before the COVID pandemic. As we are all learning and growing, some views may have shifted in the meantime, and this episode doesn't necessarily reflect current events. We hope you enjoy the show.

00:00

Eleni Neni Veltanioti

Hello, this is For Arts` Sake, a podcast that gives voice to museum people. Here we discover their untold stories, for arts sake and for your sake.

00:17

James Harrod

Today, we are talking about the value of art in education, the importance of building networks and the trials and tribulations of freelancing in the culture sector. We're joined this week by not only a new guest, but a new co-host. Please welcome Eleni.

00:28

Eleni Neni Veltanioti

Oh, thank you. Thank you.

00:42

James Harrod

Our guest today is Devon Turner, communications manager at the Group for Education in Museums, international outreach coordinator for The Big Draw, freelance arts educator at Orleans House, and now freelance writer for Museum Next. She is a creator of tiny art, Upon enthusiast and always looking to put fun and creativity back into learning. We are very lucky to be speaking with you today. Devon, welcome.

00:43

Devon Rose Turner

Thank you very much. It's great to be here.

01:08

James Harrod

Ok, first things first, you have a lot of job titles. How do you manage it all?

01:12

Devon Rose Turner

It's something that I've always kind of found myself in, juggling multiple projects at the same time. I don't really know how that came about, but it's sort of become me, I would say some of my top tips for juggling different projects are to definitely have separate notebooks. I've very much benefited from, you know, and I can have five or six notebooks at a time, but it helps me to keep the projects separate and map out my day, do a bit of bullet journaling, keep tabs on projects. And then another thing that I always try to do is book in time for myself. Before pandemic time, that looked like booking in maybe a Wednesday yoga class midday, just to take a bit of time for yourself, because when you are looking to certain deadlines and trying to juggle multiple projects, it's very easy to overlook your own well-being. So that's my second top tip. To sum it up in a nice third top tip, I would say to ask for help if you need it as well. When you are sort of owning multiple projects and dipping your hands in, it's easy to think I can take this on and not be too kind to yourself. So do ask for help if you need it. I've also found that people are very willing to give extensions and just kind of work with you if they know that you're somebody who's juggling multiple projects, and still wants to do a good job.

01:16

James Harrod

Cool, thank you.

02:33

Eleni Neni Veltanioti

Definitely very helpful tips. I followed the notebook tip, and it really helped me organise myself better. So we've spoken to a lot of culture professionals in a similar situation, working multiple part time and freelance roles. Does this perhaps speak to a problem within the sector, that people are expected to juggle so many projects and workloads?

02:36

Devon Rose Turner

I do think that, yes, within the sector, that's an issue, that a lot of jobs that were sort of coming up, were part time, especially within the learning sector. And a lot of the full time jobs I was seeing weren't exactly within learning and what I sort of wanted to be doing. So I would definitely say that's a problem along with many other problems, such as your hourly contracts, shady freelance proposals, there's a lot I think that the sector could be doing better in terms of promoting a culture where there's a healthy work life balance, and not too much pressure on people to be working multiple jobs, and having to have too many titles.

02:58

James Harrod

So you mentioned you wanted to work in education, and that was sort of the way you stayed. Obviously you're originally from Pennsylvania, I believe?

03:37

Devon Rose Turner

That's right.

03:44

James Harrod

So you now live and you work in London, what was it that brought you here in the first place? What was it that made you think, yes, I want to work in museum education, I want to work with galleries and art education, that's what I'm gonna pursue. How did you get here?

03:44

Devon Rose Turner

So this is a bit of a long story. So I would say buckle up, but interrupt me at any point if you need to. But I think I was reflecting on this this morning in preparation, and really, I think what it comes down to is when I was growing up in Pennsylvania, United States, in a small mountain town called Altoona, my mom chose to home educate us. She really believed in child led learning, which is something that I've taken throughout my career. But in particular, she encouraged us to find subjects that really interested us. And then she would find additional resources and find other ways to work that subject into our curriculum. So for me, it was art history. I loved looking at art history flashcards, I remember seeing Fra Angelico's Annunciation and just thinking Renaissance art was the most beautiful thing. She really encouraged that interest. I would say it's entirely due to that that I ended up being an art history major at university. I attended Susquehanna University, a small liberal arts school in Pennsylvania. Lots of fun Indian names, you'll get Susquehanna University, Schuylkill River and Conshohocken, just to the side, but from there, from the art history major, I actually thought for a while that I wanted to be an art history professor, because I loved education so much, and I loved art history so much. But then I'd say towards the end of my undergraduate career, I realise that the rigor of academia was possibly not for me. So I decided to pursue a path, you know, directly working in the sector. It was during those couple years when I was working as a communications manager during the day, I really wanted to get back into art. I was working as a communications manager for a classical music organisation, but was missing the museum art history part in my life. So I decided to go and volunteer for the Barnes Organisation [BARNES FOUNDATION], a wonderful Post-Impressionist, and Early Modern museum in Philadelphia. They have more Cézannes [paintings by Cézanne] than the city of Paris actually. That was a bragging point, I would highly recommend going, let me know if you are ever there. But it was from there that I asked to volunteer. Once they saw that I knew, perhaps a bit more than the regular visitor services volunteers in terms of art history, they said, why don't you join us as a gallery guide. So I'd work nine to five for communications, classical music, and then in the evenings, I'd go and work at the BARNES FOUNDATION as the gallery guide, in my early 20s, when I had the energy to do all of this, and found that that was museum education. That was where I was able to talk about art, I was able to educate people. That was really when I realised that that was a possible career for myself. So from there, I applied to UCL’s Museums and Galleries in Education MA programme, which I loved, and just kind of found myself then graduated here in the sector.

03:58

James Harrod

I realised that you clearly got this passion for art history. And then I think your story is one that we've not heard before, that idea of that child led learning as kind of a starting point is really fascinating. So there does tend to be a little bit of, you know, snobbery or elitism in a lot of British cultural institutions. One thing that we often see is the word American being used in kind of a derogatory sense if, you know, a museum or gallery is breaking from the norm, it can be derided by others as too American or it's been Americanised. I'm sure you've seen this as well. Is that something that you feel impacts your work as a professional in the sector?

06:46

Devon Rose Turner

It actually 100% does. I'm really glad that you asked that question. That's not something that I've felt comfortable enough to talk about, because I've been worried about, you know, possibly negative implications. But very, very much so. When I actually first moved to London, and was in the process of doing my MA, I didn't have any friends when I moved over here, I made friends through the MA, but I was sort of reaching out and looking to people and I connected with another American who was working at a museum here in London and just met for coffee. The first thing she said to me was, I'm sorry, if you're an American, you'll never get a learning job here in England, you never will, you know. You'll get to the final stages of the interview, and then they'll say, you're just not our fit, you're not our type, we went a different way. That kind of stuck with me for a long time, actually. But I've always kind of thrived when people think that I can't do something. When my high school art teacher told me that art history was only for scholars, and I shouldn't even waste my time, that's when I applied for an art history major.

07:22

James Harrod

Oh, yeah, this seems like a good motivator.

08:27

Devon Rose Turner

But I found that one other aspect of being an American in a foreign sector, I guess one could say, plopped into a different sector, is that, I don't know, there's a certain sort of like hutzpah, I like to say, or confidence that I found that Americans sort of have innately, at least I like to believe this. I found that that has sort of propelled me a bit further, it sometimes surprises I would say, the snobbery that you mentioned, when I come in with a smile and a handshake and asking to get involved, because maybe that's not the way that things typically work here. But I'd like to think it has certainly given me advantages in other ways. I will just work hard to disprove any sort of negative American connotation that I continue to hear.

08:33

Eleni Neni Veltanioti

I don't know if people have heard about GEM, so for anyone who's not aware, could you give us a quick rundown of what GEM is and what's your role there?

09:19

Devon Rose Turner

Absolutely. So GEM is Group for Education in Museums, this is the acronym, what it stands for. It is a member's organisation that promotes excellence in education within the museums and heritage sector. My job there is Communications Manager. I work there three days a week. And although we do a lot, we are actually a very small team, you know, four part time staff members, so we do share a lot of different roles. I've enjoyed the opportunity to, you know, create new partnerships and work on a lot more than just maybe what your standard comms manager would do, which has been a great learning experience.

09:28

James Harrod

So the GEM members, who exactly are they? Are they all professionals in the sector, is it all students, are they just in the UK? Who are they?

10:06

Devon Rose Turner

It really ranges. So we have both individual and institutional memberships available. We also had a brilliant freelance offer when COVID first hit, where we invited freelancers to join the GEM network, and also have a supplier listing for free. We got 141 new members, which was a huge influx, but very brilliant. But the GEM members, they can really be from all over. The biggest concentration is within the UK. However, we are working very hard right now to expand internationally. We do have a bit of a presence internationally. We have some members within the US, and we also have a European rep as well, who's based in Belgium currently. We also have connections with Hungary, we actually had a trip planned to go to Budapest before COVID hit to see their museums over there. But GEM members, they can really be anyone who's interested in learning, who has any sort of connection to learning and education in museums and heritage. So with that, you could have museums, heritage sites, galleries, science centers, educational institutions, you could have freelancers who work within education, but it's a great sort of network. We have area reps as well who are spread. As I mentioned, we have one area rep who's in Belgium, but they as well are all throughout the United Kingdom. So we endeavor to have them connect with the members in their area. It's great to know that wherever you are in the world, there's a GEM rep dedicated to you.

10:13

James Harrod

Since you started working at GEM, what have been some, you know, some highlights or some things you found particularly eye opening?

11:37

Devon Rose Turner

So it's been an interesting, how many months, I guess nine months of working at GEM, because I started there in September of 2019. If we were to just look at our calendar, it's been kind of a roller coaster of a few months. So I'd say what has been, definitely some pride points, we're working on the publications that we've released. We released the case studies on SEN SEND in December of 2019, and that is available on the website. And then we've also released in March case studies on early years programmes in the sector. Working on those publications was very full on for me, but a very, very rewarding experience. I would say some of the challenges have just been COVID-19 really. It's very disheartening to see how many people are furloughed in the sector, how many people don't know about, you know, their job security. And as a membership organisation, we want to be there for our members, uplift our members, and just thinking of how we can support those who are furloughed, not furloughed, still working like crazy. So we've been doing the best we can through digital initiatives, taking courses online, but it has been very, very full on time.

11:43

James Harrod

I must say some of the case studies that you guys put out are, they are just fascinating. They are so in depth and represent perspectives and insights that I wouldn't have thought within museum education. So outside of GEM, you're also the international outreach coordinator for the Big Draw, which is the world's largest drawing festival. Could you tell us a little bit about your work there? Maybe for those who again, aren't super familiar with the Big Draw, what the Big Draw is? How did it come about?

12:57

Devon Rose Turner

Definitely. So the Big Draw is, as you said, it is the world's largest drawing festival. But it's also a lot more than that. You know, we're a very small charity, we're actually, again, four part time staff members, so there's a thing I guess, with me working for small teams, but it seems to be working well. So the Big Draw, we advocate for really the power of the pencil for well-being through creativity, through mark making. It doesn't just have to be pencils and paper, it can be drawing with lights, it can be going out and foraging for leaves and flowers and then drawing a picture using those, it can be life drawing using videos of animals, it could be lots of different things. So what we do is we encourage people to become festival organisers, and then host their Big Draw events all over the world. We are in 28 countries, we have on average about 450,000 people drawing every year. It's a huge worldwide festival. And although October is known as our festival month, you can host events all year round and get plugged into it. Part of what I do for the Big Draw is, as international outreach coordinator, I reach out to museums and galleries all around the world. I've very much been keeping up with when museums are opening up in different countries and reaching out to institutions there. And I say museums and galleries, but it is schools, universities, wildlife centers, individual artists, all different levels and sizes of groups can subscribe to the Big Draw, but I'm trying to bring people on board, let them know about all the good that we do. And then I also do log interviews, which I really love. I do a lot of the content creation, I share a lot of that responsibility with other colleagues, who are a little bit more skilled at graphic design than me. But I'd like to have a go sometimes, and I do the mailer every week as well.

13:24

Eleni Neni Veltanioti

Brilliant. Yeah. So each year the Big Draw has a different theme, which informs drawings that participants create. So this year, under like, the pandemic shadowing everything, has this changed, has it affected the way you work, the theme of this year?

15:15

Devon Rose Turner

It's massively impacted the Big Draw, just as it has with a lot of other small arts organisations. Every year, we do have a different theme. Last year, it was drawn to life, and we featured lots of ways that drawing can really improve health and well-being. This year, it's climate of change. When we announced that in February of 2020, it really kicked off with a bang, we were looking to get, you know, the theme really harmonises, it really highlights the way that we harmonise with nature and the ways that we do not harmonise with nature. It's meant to kind of spark that activism in people and get them to realise that this is a climate emergency. We've commissioned Vicky of Lightship Print Shop, Lightship Print Shop to create some wonderful illustrations of endangered and vulnerable species that we've been using throughout all of our marketing. So the theme got off to a great launch, but then COVID hit. We really then had to pivot our focus and very much focus on digital events. So we produced a guide to running online digital events. We've also kind of reworked our materials, or mini mag to let people know how they can host online events, whether it be posting video, and asking followers to send in their interpretations, or whether it is posting out actual drawing packs to perhaps people in the community that don't have access to technology, lots of different ways that you can do it virtually. We've just really been trying to get that message out there.

15:32

James Harrod

Cool. I'm glad that you're still finding ways to get people drawing, to get people involved, despite the world being a very, very different place than it was, you know, even in February when you kicked off the theme. So coming back a little bit, you said you were homeschooled, your mom chose to home educate you. You've also been a really vocal advocate for better inclusion for homeschooled kids within museum and gallery education programmes. Why do you think that is such an important area and something that requires so much attention and focus?

16:56

Devon Rose Turner

Thank you for asking that as well, that's a very good question. It's something that, you know, in the US home education is, and it's called homeschooling there, quite commonly, but it is much more prevalent, and I would say socially accepted than it is in the UK. So I was quite surprised when I came over here that if there was sort of any mention of home educated groups or children in learning policies, it was almost apologetic in a way, because people sort of, there's a lot of stigma around home education as well, because it is allowed according - this is at least in England, because my dissertation really focused on England alone, so I can't speak to all of the UK, because the laws are a bit different. But at least in England, it is legal to homeschool, and all you have to do is provide a reasonable education, I believe that's the term they use, or adequate or something like that. So there are varying different interpretations of that, and there's also no sort of requirement or registration for home educated children to be known to the government at all, which is, you know, fair enough for the home educating families that want to have some privacy, but then also it makes it a bit difficult to know exactly how many children there are out there. It's just a bit worrying to me the fact that they're missing out possibly on engagement with arts and culture. So I think that museums within the UK could be doing a lot more to reach out to these groups, to ask them what they need, because a lot of the times they try to book onto school visits, and they say, you know, we have a group of key stage one and two children, a couple toddlers. That's absolutely not allowed, because it's only for key stage one or key stage two. So there's not that flexibility often. And some museums have got it absolutely right. The Horniman Museum has adapted some of their programmes, so they can do object handling sessions with home educated children. The Wallace Collection, Postal Museum, British Museum, they all have large home education days where they really advertise it well, and invite people in for dropping sessions of, you know, all different ages and ranges. So they've gotten it right, taking that flexible approach, knowing that these children might not necessarily know to sit cross legged and raise their hands for a question, but that doesn't mean that their learning is any less valuable than their school counterparts. I just looked up a couple stats before we sat down, because I thought this question might come up, so I dusted off my dissertation. And granted, I did write it in 2019, but at that time, there were an estimated 80,000 home educated children, that's within England alone and recorded they only have about 45,000. So that's a massive, massive group of children that's being in a way really not thought about or catered to within museum education.

17:24

James Harrod

Yeah, I think the point you bring up about the flexibility is really, really key. But even from my background working in teaching, working in formal education, we had kids who would transition, you know, into home education or out of home education and into formal schooling, just the difference in the experiences they would have had, or, you know, the points that would be up to in terms of their learning, and their experiences varied wildly. It definitely was something that a lot of schools don't necessarily take into account. The fact that, you know, museums and galleries aren't either is a massive worry, obviously, for the homeschooling community. Are there any examples of museums or galleries or really any other cultural institution who are just really getting it right? Any examples of programmes that you think address the needs of the homeschool community really well?

20:04

Devon Rose Turner

Absolutely. There are some people doing it right, and I think we should chat about that more, so that more people see these great case studies. When I did my research, what I did is I broke down the home education programmes into four different categories. Museums that offer home education days, like the Postal Museum, the Jewish Museum do this, as well as the Wallace Collection, the Manchester Museum, the Winchester Science Center, to give a shout out to the southeast, where they again advertise and they bring in these children, it can be sometimes a couple of hundred children in a day, but they have a day where it's opened up, really focused on the needs of families in a flexible learning environment. The second one being a home educated programme. That's an example of me being an educator who's taken the time to speak to a home educating family in the area, and come up with a programme that fits their needs. So it's, you know, during the week, it's not on the weekends, it's during the week for these children, it's in a flexible environment, it's very important as well that the facilitator is in the loop with the educator and knows that this is a group that might have some different needs, and that's alright. So those programmes are great. Brooklyn's Museum does them, Historic Royal Palaces has done them, Manchester Museum, they do the home education days, as well as these programmes. And then the Barber Institute of Fine Art at Birmingham Museum, that's actually where I did my dissertation observation, they have a great programme they've developed. The third one, I'll go through them quickly, being a group offer. So if you want to bring, just like if you wanted to bring a school group on, you'd have to book on as a group. That could be a little more difficult for home educating families, because there is not often one designated leader, as there is a head teacher. So it's on one person to sort of round up all of the families and book on and bring them in. There is still a lot of expectation about, you know, behavior and rules that can be quite difficult. And then the fourth option, which is the, it's better than nothing, but it's not the best option, is self-guided. So on the website, it will say we welcome home-educated families to come and use our self-guided resources, which is again, I mentioned, but in my mind, you can be doing a little better.

20:51

Eleni Neni Veltanioti

Brilliant. But is it advertised enough for like families to reach out to the museums? I remember working in a small museum, and people would call us to ask for information. They didn't know that they had that opportunity.

22:51

Devon Rose Turner

Absolutely, if you know to ask for it, it can be there. That is how actually a lot of these programmes developed, at least the programmes that I investigated in a lot of detail. I'm assuming for the majority of the programmes developed from a home educating parent going to the museum or gallery and saying, can we make something work? So it's not often advertised quite well. And if it is, it's very hard to reach out to the home educating community, because I don't even often like to use the term community, because it's really a community of practice, and not so much a community as in one type of specific parent and child who's educated, because there are a myriad of reasons why people can home educate. So in terms of advertising programmes, you can go on Facebook, there are some great home educating websites, but it's quite hard to know exactly how to market to that community of practice.

23:08

James Harrod

Thank you.

24:00

Eleni Neni Veltanioti

Brilliant. Yeah, thank you. So since March this year, you've also been writing for Museum Next. Some of your recent articles focused on how museums can make better use of email marketing, the value of brand consistency, and working with social media influences. So why is digital marketing so crucial for the future of museums?

24:00

Devon Rose Turner

It is crucial. I've absolutely loved writing for Museum Next. I've kind of discovered, my goal for 2020 was to do more creative writing. I think I've been doing ok so far, I'm happy to say, but for digital marketing, I mean, digital marketing is sort of the bread and butter of a lot of museums and galleries. I think it's very underutilised. There has to be a solid foundation of Google Analytics to know where your audience is, who you're actually talking to, who you're trying to bring in. And then once you have that foundation, it's amazing the way that you can sort of target people and not in like a come to this programme way, but like really let them know about your collection, build a relationship with them, go on a customer journey. So digital marketing is very important. It's kind of a scary word for a lot of people, a scary term, especially Google Analytics, like, you know, actual shutters as I mentioned, or SEO optimization. But it is really not that scary. I've actually taught myself everything that I know about digital marketing. Like I said, I have an art history background, when I started working as a box office and communications manager, it was one of my first real jobs out of college, and that was for the classical music nonprofit that I mentioned. I was all of a sudden the marketing manager, I was young, you know, I'm doing air quotes right now. But I had to learn a lot on the fly. I knew about social media, but I had to take a crash course on Google Analytics. I actually asked my employers at the time if they would pay for me to take a university course on graphic design, which they did. So they ended up saving thousands of dollars in graphic design, and I ended up getting some graphic design skills, a lesson and you never know what you can get until you ask for it, which was my dad's favorite phrase. But yes, digital marketing is very important, and I would encourage everyone to read those Museum Next articles as well. And just, you know, keep an eye out for all the content that is out there on the internet about how to understand this, because it can really help take your great work that you're doing already in museum education, the extra mile and get it in the hands and in front of the right people.

24:21

Eleni Neni Veltanioti

And yeah, you can learn theory, but I think it really helps people to have examples of like, good practice. So I wonder like, have you noticed, like institutions, museums, galleries, that they are really nailing it? They're doing a great job, and, you know, everyone should like consider and like taking a look at their work?

26:24

Devon Rose Turner

Absolutely. So I'll just name two favorites right now, which are both in Britain, which maybe I should have brought up some US examples, but hey, we're here today, I'll give them a shout.

26:51

James Harrod

It's your choice, it's your choice.

26:58

Devon Rose Turner

So I am a big fan of the Manchester Museum. We actually, GEM taught a remote learning course just last week to museums group in Northern Ireland, and we used Manchester Museum as an example, because they've been doing #mm, Manchester Museum quarantine, in quarantine, which has been quite good, because they've been very consistent with their audience. They've been doing weekly videos on Periscope, having curators explore various collections. I'm assuming that they are going into their data and looking at what's most popular and what people want to see. But they've been doing a really great job. And what's so special about what they're doing is that they're consistent. So you know, every Tuesday you can go on, if you want your kids to have a science lesson, I don't know, see dissected frogs, they have real frogs there anyway, if you want your kids to have a little science lesson, tune in on Tuesday. If you want to see more about frogs, tune in on Tuesday. So they've been doing a really great job. I would say the Horniman as well, they've been getting a lot of shout outs, but they're really a special museum. They've been doing sort of a similar thing, where they've had two of their learning officers who have so much knowledge, enthusiasm and vigor, speak about their collection on video, and they're able to get objects out from their brilliant handling collection, show them in the video. And they as well are very consistent. What's important about any museum that's putting out digital content right now, is that you're not just spewing it sort of off the top of your head, you're thinking about how this is embedded longer term into your programming, how this is going to be sustainable. I think both of them are doing that very well and expanding their audiences whilst still being true to their core audience.

27:00

James Harrod

On the topic of, you know, COVID-19 and the world being shut down, you've been making lots of tiny paintings. You are an artist yourself, clearly. What got you started with the whole tiny paintings thing? How did that spiral out of control? You know, I've seen your social media feed, sometimes you seem to be making hundreds of these a day. What happened there?

28:36

Eleni Neni Veltanioti

And that tiny exhibition.

28:57

Devon Rose Turner

I guess I sort of lost it halfway through lockdown when I went up and I made a hilarious tiny art exhibition, lost it in the best way possible, because it was very entertaining. But I've always enjoyed painting, it's always been very much sort of a therapeutic exercise for me, rather than trying to work on a finished project. When lockdown came, I actually, you know, I have anxiety, I'm not afraid to talk about it. I think mental health is very important. And right at the start of lockdown, I was having a very difficult time with anxiety and sort of the uncertainty that we were all feeling. And I really just turned to painting during that time. What I love about painting really tiny things is that the pressure is not on to create a huge masterpiece, you know. I could sit there and do like five different shades of blue. I'm also kind of, I'm very detail oriented as communication managers are and so if I just have a tiny little canvas to focus on in front of me, it's a lot more palatable than a big scary piece of paper, I guess. But I've been trying to just spread joy through the tiny paintings, once I was starting to feel a bit better, you know, mentally, I wanted to try to give back to the community in a way. It sounds kind of cheesy, but I live in Hampstead and it's the nicest little community really. We have just a couple of shops that have opened up, you know, halfway through lockdown and have been caffeinating me, feeding me, giving me fresh produce. So I've just created, you know, some tiny little paintings just for them of coffee and, you know, pastries and just have given them out. It's just something that surprises people to get a little painting. And some of them have gone up in shop windows, which delights me, but it's just a way to entertain myself and to spread joy.

29:00

James Harrod

I think that’s amazing, you know, it's a really, really nice way of looking at this whole thing. A couple of questions that we ask everybody in every single one of these episodes, is first and foremost, if you had unlimited funding, what kind of a museum would you create?

30:49

Devon Rose Turner

That's a really great question. I would love to see, I think what would be really incredible is to see a museum entirely dedicated to black artists. I think that would, you know, at this time, especially. I mean, it's something that's always been very important, to highlight artists from diverse backgrounds, but I would say especially considering the Black Lives Matter movement, and just the real momentum that there is in the sector at the moment to end racism and flip the switch. I think it would be an absolutely amazing time to debut something like that. My favorite artist in the world is Inca Shona Bari. I met him once at the 154 Contemporary African Art Fair, I believe it's called, and really had one of those fangirl moments where I didn't quite know what to say. But I love him and Kehinde Wiley, Kara Walker. God, I mean, that would be just a wonderful museum. So you know, I'd want to hire some people to curate that and put it together. But that would be what I want to see at this point.

31:09

Eleni Neni Veltanioti

Brilliant, brilliant. Devon, if there's one thing you want people to go away from this interview thinking about, what is it?

32:17

Devon Rose Turner

If there's one thing I want people to go away knowing is that it's very, very important to put things in perspective. We are currently in a pandemic, and it's not up to you to learn a new language, embroider every curtain in your house, you know, do 10 TickTocs a day. It is up to you to just be at peace, and just be who you are. If you have time to work on CPD, if you have time to, you know, become a Big Draw organiser or join GEM as a member and work on your CPD, super. But if not, it is fine to just be and, you know, this too shall pass, we will all get through it.

32:25

James Harrod

That made me feel a lot better at that. In closing then Devon, where can people find you?

33:03

Devon Rose Turner

Oh, people can find me on the internet for now. Or in Hampstead.

33:10

James Harrod

So where on the internet people can find you?

33:15

Devon Rose Turner

On the internet? I mean, God, don't Google me. I don't know what would come up quite honestly. My grandfather got a Facebook last year, and he's been going through the family albums. But I would say I have a website, devonroseturner.com. I'm very active on Instagram as well. I post a lot of my tiny paintings if you want to follow there. And on Twitter and LinkedIn, those are sort of my professional calling cards in a way. So that is where you will find me talking about all the great things happening with GEM and Big Draw, my opinions about the sector and sharing any sort of freelance work I'm doing.

33:17

James Harrod

Devon, thank you so much for speaking with us today.

33:52

Devon Rose Turner

Thank you.

33:53

Eleni Neni Veltanioti

Yeah, and for your honesty and sharing your experiences with us and the audience.

33:56

Devon Rose Turner

It's absolutely wonderful to be speaking with you all and I've been a big fan of For Arts` Sake, and I'm very excited to see where this podcast goes.

34:00

James Harrod

Thank you very much.

34:11

Eleni Neni Veltanioti

Thank you

34:12