9:00 - 10:20 am - Jennifer DePrizio, Portland Museum of Art: Learning to Look: Using Observation and Inquiry to Expand Understanding
10:40 am - 12:00 pm - Peter Gittleman, Historic New England: Good Tour / Bad Tour
Jennifer DePrizio, Director of Learning and Interpretation, Portland Museum of Art
Jennifer DePrizio is the Director of Learning and Interpretation at the Portland Museum of Art. In this capacity, she strives to provide opportunities for all visitors to make meaningful connections with works of art. In leading her team, she is focusing on attracting new audiences to the Museum and creating programs that impact the community. To achieve this goal, she focuses on developing opportunities that are learner-centered, involve active and social interaction, tap into individual visitor’s motivation, and provide relevant context. Her particular interests are gallery teaching, effective training strategies, and audience engagement through interpretative materials. She recently wrote an interpretation plan for the Museum, which will be instrumental in developing new interpretative materials for the collection. Prior to joining the staff at the PMA in September 2014, Jenn was the Director of Visitor Learning at the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum in Boston for eight years. During this time, she designed and facilitated innovative and effective training programs for the Gardner’s 50 museum teachers (docents) and over 150 volunteers. In anticipation of the January 2012 opening of a Renzo Piano-designed wing, Jenn took a leadership role in new initiatives. Those she is particularly proud of include co-organizing and facilitating an institution-wide service training In her position, she is also involved in leading the visitor experience team, developing interpretative materials for both the historic collection and temporary exhibits, and participating in audience research initiatives. Since 2008 Jenn has been an adjunct faculty member in Tufts University’s Museum Studies Graduate Program where she teaches the foundation museum education course. She has also taught art history courses at Holy Cross, Anna Maria College and the Worcester Art Museum. She has been invited by museums throughout New England to assist in training gallery educators. Previous museum positions include the Education Specialist for Public Teaching Programs at the J. Paul Getty Museum in Los Angeles, CA, Assistant Curator of Education at the Worcester Art Museum and Director of Education at the Vermont Historical Society in Montepelier, VT. She holds a B.A. in Art History from the College of the Holy Cross and a M.A.T. in Museum Education from The George Washington University.
Peter Gittleman, Team Leader, Visitor Experience, Historic New England
Peter Gittleman graduated from Tufts University majoring in anthropology and French. He earned a Master of Arts in Preservation Studies from Boston University. His thesis was entitled, “The Gropius House: Conception, Construction, and Criticism.” Peter has been working for Historic New England (formerly known as the Society for the Preservation of New England Antiquities – SPNEA) since 1985. He started as a volunteer tour guide at the Otis House in downtown Boston and later became head of interpretation for all Historic New England’s historic house museums. Today Peter supervises the visitor experience at the organization’s 36 sites, a job that encompasses public programs for adults and families, school and youth programs, and, of course, the house tours. Each year, Peter is responsible for training up to 100 new guides to interpret Historic New England's sites. Peter's professional activities include serving as board president of the Royall House and Slave Quarters, a historic house museum in Medford, Massachusetts. He lives in Newton, Massachusetts in a very drafty, 1909 house.