That's right. According to a recent press release, the museum will debut an aptly named show called "Guarding the Art," which will feature works from the BMA's collection, chosen by guards with the help of art historian and curator Dr. Lowery Stokes Sims. And the goal of this exhibition? To offer "a particularly human-centered lens through which to consider the objects" from the people who spend all day around them.
"Our security officers spend more time in our galleries and living among our collection than any other staff within the institution," BMA's Christopher Bedford explained. "It is their perspectives, their insights, and their relationships with the art and daily interactions with our visitors that will set the stage for 'Guarding the Art' to be an exceptional experience."
Originally conceived earlier this year as part of BMA's diversity commitment by chief curator Dr. Asma Naeem in dialogue with BMA Trustee Amy Elias, the 17 guards — many of whom "are also artists, chefs, musicians, scholars and writers" — come from "a broad range of backgrounds and interests," all of which is apparently reflected in the far-reaching exhibition that spans eras, genres, cultures and mediums. The officers who have been tapped to participate include Traci Archable-Frederick, Jess Bither, Ben Bjork, Ricardo Castro, Melissa Clasing, Bret Click, Alex Dicken, Kellen Johnson, Michael Jones, Rob Kempton, Chris Koo, Alex Lei, Dominic Mallari, Dereck Mangus, Sara Ruark, Joan Smith and Elise Tensley.
Granted, the release also stated that particular focus will be placed on lesser-known works from the BMA's collection. As of now, several featured works have already been announced, though the exhibition will apparently be thematically concerned with the passage of time.
"Guarding the Art" debuts March 2022. Until then, you can find out more about the exhibition, here.
Painting by Max Beckmann / Courtesy of the Baltimore Museum of Art