An inspired museum director: student Anne Kremers
Anne Kremers (1989) still has to complete her thesis in Art History, but she is already director of a museum. After following an internship at Villa Mondriaan, in September 2013 she took over the position of the oldest museum director of the Netherlands, becoming in the process the youngest museum director of the Netherlands.
"I never thought my appointment would get so much media attention. Now that I’ve been doing this work for nearly a year, there’s a bit more routine in my days. Still, I know that a day rarely turns out according to plan, which is what makes it so much fun. Sometimes, I get a sudden call from Radio 1, or some really important person from the museum world just appears downstairs. And of course I always make time for these kinds of encounters!”
"I began with a programme in Cultural Studies in Rotterdam, where I learned a lot about visitors and the financial aspects of the art and culture sector. In Leiden, I studied Art History, which taught me a lot about art theory. It is also here that I learnt to write really well. Then during my internship, I learnt to be practical, and ultimately to combine the theoretical and the practical perspectives. This is why I advise all Humanities students to follow an internship!”
She is enthusiastic about the future of the museum: ‘I pour all my soul and joy into this work, and I want to see the museum grow into one of the key cultural meeting centres of the Achterhoek. We also want to innovate: for instance we are currently working on an app that knows your precise location as you walk through the museum. I hope that we can use this app to create a positive ‘first experience of art’, so that we can give our visitors (in particular our younger visitors) a taste for more. As the ‘youngest director’, I feel that it is my duty to interest young people in art, but I do not harbour any illusions that droves of young people will suddenly appear on our doorstep. I do know that the first experience you have with art plays an important role.” What was the most striking experience she had in the past year? “The most amazing moment was when we put together the first exhibition. We had been working on it for months – and then all of a sudden, over the course of four days, it just materialised, and it was even more beautiful than I had imagined. It takes months of work to prepare for an opening, and this one moment is what it’s all about.”
She is using her thesis to prepare the next exhibition. What about her plans for after her graduation? What about in a few years’ time, when she has acquired even more experience in her field? She is determined in her answer, but her voice clearly expresses her gratitude for the work she is doing now: “I hope that in future I will still be able to work in a place that offers a podium to artists and where their works of art are presented to a wide audience.”
(Esther van Haren, 16 July 2014)