Volunteer Spotlight: Michael D. Farley

In this series, Education Department Coordinator Emily Bray profiles volunteers within the museum. The Phillips Collection volunteers are an integral part of the museum and help in many ways: greeting and guiding guests through the museum, helping with Sunday Concert, assisting patrons in the Library, helping out with Phillips after 5 and special events, and so much more. Our volunteers offer a wealth of expertise and experience to the museum, and we are delighted to highlight several them.

Michael D. Farley, Art Information Volunteer Mentor/Phillips after 5 Volunteer

Volunteer Spotlight - Michael Farley

Michael D. Farley

What year did you start volunteering at The Phillips Collection?

What do you see as the most valuable aspect of your volunteering?
Supporting the Phillips, working with staff & guests, learning about the collection.

 What do you do when you are not volunteering at The Phillips Collection?
Chief Development Officer-American Society of International Law

What is your favorite room or painting here?
Jacob Lawrence & Rothko room

If you had to choose one word to describe Phillips, what would it be?

Share a fun fact about you!
My first nonprofit job was as a Development Director of the Portland Art Museum in Portland, OR, in 1986, and there I created the popular “Museum After Hours” program still going strong today, very similar to Phillips after 5.

Is there anything else you would like to share?
Enjoy Thursday evening volunteering and working the Will Call desk

Phillips after 5-Suppress the Depression

Photos: Andrea Taylor and Brooke Rosenblatt

Photos: Andrea Taylor and Brooke Rosenblatt

From vaudeville-inspired magic to prohibition punch and board games from the 1930s, visitors had a blast at our Suppress the Depression Phillips after 5. For those feeling a bit overwhelmed by the lively atmosphere Valeksa Soares’s Fainitng Couch (2011) offered the perfect place for a moment of rest and restoration.

Shedding Light on Katrín Sigurđardóttir

Ísafjörður Series (2009) by Katrín Sigurdardóttir on display in Gallery 115. Photo: Eliza French

Ísafjörður Series (2009) by Katrín Sigurdardóttir on display in Gallery 115. Photo: Eliza French

The Phillips Collection hosted a Nordic Lights themed Phillips after 5 in February to celebrate our Nordic Initiative, a partnership with the embassies of Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway, and Sweden. Along with film, music, and food from the Nordic region, the event featured lamps created by artists and designers from each of the five Nordic countries. The lamps from Iceland were designed by Katrín Sigurđardóttir, an artist who will speak about her work at The Phillips Collection on March 27, 2014 as part our Conversations with Artists series.

Sigurđardóttir, best known for her sculpture and installation pieces, questions our perceptions of space and time in her work. The lamps she designed are works of functional art titled Ísafjörður Series (2009), after Ísafjörður  (“ice fjord” in English), an isolated town in northwest Iceland with a population around 2,600. Sigurđardóttir photographed a series of streetscapes or “village-scapes” of the town and transferred those images to the lasercut birch veneer that wraps around the shades of these lamps. When illuminated, the lamps project photographic images laser cut into birch veneer onto their white vellum outer shades.

Ísafjörður was a captivating subject for the artist because of the unique conditions there. The town is located among steep mountains and, due to its location, the town only sees sunlight for a few hours in the winter. In the summer, the sun never truly sets. With this series of lamps, the artist sought to capture the distinctive sense of time, light, and space experienced in Ísafjörður.

Eliza French, Manager of Center Initiatives

To reserve tickets for Katrín Sigurđardóttir’s upcoming artist talk at the Phillips, visit the event page on our site.