Harm Reduction

Rachel Nicholson, Director, Interpretation, Evaluation & Visitor Research at the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art, shares her team’s efforts to rewrite the Nelson-Atkins’ permanent collection gallery labels through a harm reduction lens.

By: Rachel Nicholson Having drafted new labels, we want to ensure our approach is actually meaningful to our audiences at the Nelson-Atkins before putting them on the walls. We’re currently in the process of evaluating our new labels to better understand their impact on visitors. Our approach for label evaluations is usually to do random...
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By: Rachel Nicholson, Jocelyn Edens, and Ariana Chaivaranon In our workshops with curatorial colleagues (which we wrote about in the last post), we continually heard certain ideas rise to the surface about shared principles for interpretive text at the Nelson-Atkins. These included: Complexity: a label can be an invitation to explore the object and ideas...
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By: Rachel Nicholson In my last post, I wrote about harm reduction as a philosophy and how it might be applied to rethinking museum labels. In this post, I’ll explain just how we started these conversations at the Nelson-Atkins and put our ideas in action. This project is on-going, and we have certainly stumbled along...
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It’s always a pleasure to share this page with our friends and colleagues in museums.  Today we’re delighted to share the first post in a new four-part series by Rachel Nicholson from the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art (located in Kansas City, MO).  Every two weeks throughout April and May, Rachel will highlight her team’s efforts...
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