Letter: Museum's purpose was never about artwork
To the editor:
I have been following the ongoing food fight at the Berkshire Museum with some interest. As one of (I assume) scores of Berkshire residents who took part in the Saturday morning programs initiated and nurtured by the late, great Bartlett Hendricks in the 1950s, I am unpersuaded that a rejuvenated museum full of interactive stops for curious city kids is not a good idea. At least that seems to be the jeremiad sounded by the marshaled Berkshire brigade marching to stop such a reordering.
On those long-ago mornings, before the program began, we urchins would invade the galleries pushing buttons and checking to make sure the dinosaurs were where we left them the week prior and otherwise making very good use of the exhibits. Now we are to believe that some paintings that may or may not be much visited, should have priority over such explorations.
The truth is, however wonderful, the museum has never been an art attraction. For that, the county does offer Mass MoCA, the Williams Art Museum, the Clark and even the Rockwell Museum where one can get his fill of Rockwell's work. I wonder how many of the sign troopers go to these spots on a regular basis?
If the museum can get its act together to educate and inspire current generations of kids, I say fine. I suspect the Cranes would be happy.
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