Susan Baley, executive director and curator of Swope Art Museum, will speak at the March 16 Alliance of the Swope meeting in the museum at 25 S. Seventh St.
Coffee for guests will begin at 11 a.m., the program at noon.
Baley came to the Swope in 2015, after 20 years of working in museum education at the University of Oklahoma’s Fred Jones Jr. Museum of Art. She has also taught art history and art appreciation at the college and high school level, as well as museum studies at the University of Oklahoma. Baley is originally from Missouri and says that she was happy to return to the Midwest after many years in the Southwest. She has a bachelor of fine arts in art history from Wichita State University, and a master of arts in art history from the University of Oklahoma. Her thesis was on American sculptor Alice Aycock and the relationship between Aycock’s writing and her large-scale sculptures. Baley has a passion for making museums more relevant to their communities and for increasing engagement with communities in an inclusive way.
Baley’s talk will focus on art appreciation from the perspective of one of her favorite books, “Why a Painting is like a Pizza: a Guide to Understanding and Enjoying Modern Art,” by Nancy Heller. Both the author and Baley are cooks who often see the parallels between cooking and art making. The talk will consider how people can refine analytical tools they already possess to understand and enjoy even the most unfamiliar paintings and sculptures.