Docents provide insight, education on Columbia museums

4 months 2 weeks 9 hours ago Sunday, December 10 2017 Dec 10, 2017 Sunday, December 10, 2017 3:59:00 PM CST December 10, 2017 in Continuous News
By: Aaron K. Ladd, KOMU 8 Reporter
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COLUMBIA - Museums around Columbia hosted docent led tours Sunday, spreading awareness about their exhibits and art collections. Docents are museum volunteers who spend a year in training, learning the details behind the pieces and their journey to mid-Missouri.

"Well you're here every Monday for one year learning about every single piece," said Valerie Hammon, docent for Columbia's Museum of Art and Archaeology.

"At the end of it you're so full with knowledge you're like 'Wow how could I possibly remember all of this', but you do."

Docents typically study pieces for years, sometimes even traveling to countries where the pieces originated. 

Hammon's tour focused on Palestinian and Israeli ceremonies, some dating as early as 370 BC. The museums collection encompasses the major cultures of the ancient Mediterranean world.

"I think too few people take advantage," said fellow docent Wayne Merrill. "This museum is a gem. It's right here in Columbia, Missouri, and I think too few people realize that and come and enjoy it."

About 20 people participated in the hour-long tour. According Merrill, only a fifth of the museums nearly 16,000 exhibits are currently on display.

In 2016, US. Art Awards named the museum at Mizzou North one of America's Best 25 Galleries and Museums. 

For more information on docent led tours and exhibits at the Museum of Art and Archeology tour visit the museum's website

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