Dali Museum Docent-Training Is My New Jobby / by Dana Wood

Fun factoid: I'm a massive Art Nerd. In fact, as a friend describes me, I'm an "art historian trapped in a Beauty Editor's body." 

So pretty much the second I found out we were ditching Gotham for Planet Palm Tree (aka St. Petersburg FLA), I fired off an email to Peter Tush, Curator of Education for the Dali Museum and overlord of its Docent Training program

Though it took months to finally land a spot (my initial email landed in the digital abyss, but I actually followed-up....sooooo not like me), I was accepted and started in January. 

We meet at the Museum once a week, on Mondays, for three hours of lectures. We also watch seriously crazy short films and documentaries, i.e., Louis Bunuel's epic Surrealist work Un chien Andalou and an extremely pretentious Dali-themed installment of Robert Hughes's "Shock of the New" BBC series. (I'm sorry, that was unkind. I know Robert Hughes was brilliant, but he was realllllly into his hair and overall grooviness back in those days.) 

SIDEBAR: I love Squarespace, the digital platform for this blog. But they desperately need to install an accents function. J'ecris beaucoup francais...and occasional Spanish and German. Like I couldn't slap the cool stuff on top of Bunuel up there without cutting-and-pasting from Word, and I very much wanted to. Grrr...times a billion.

Okay, back to the true essence of this blog post: Docent Training,..

It's a 17-week program wrapping up circa July, and it includes short quizzes, lengthy take-home tests, tons of reading, and, at the end, a mock tour given in front of our fellow classmates. 

To say that I'm loving it is a massive understatement. I text Hubby with my quiz and test scores (tres bien, thus far), I lug my Dali books in the car on even the shortest of trips, and I rush to the Museum's Cafe Gala every Monday at least an hour before class so I can chit-chat with my Art Nerd pals. 

Beyond my baseline commitment, post-class - all Docents are required to give at least one tour per week for the following year after we graduate - I don't know where any of this is leading. 

But while it's unpaid work, it is so, so, so much more than a hobby. It is, in fact, my new jobby. 





Nieuw Amsterdam, my fave Dali work. Peep the chair earrings! Chairings?

Nieuw Amsterdam, my fave Dali work. Peep the chair earrings! Chairings?