Submitted by Tacoma Art Museum
Plans are underway for Tacoma Art Museum (TAM) to tentatively reopen to the public on Friday, October 9.
Since closing March 13, TAM staff has been hard at work creating a reopening strategy to provide a safe and healthy environment for visitors and staff. David F. Setford, TAM Executive Director, served on the state-wide committee which created museum specific reopening procedure recommendations that was submitted to the Office of Governor Jay Inslee. Following the guidelines from Washington State and Pierce County Health Department, new procedures will be in place to offer an art respite and nearly contactless experience for visitors.
“We know that it will be a different experience for visitors with these precautions in place, but the ability to enjoy the galleries and exhibitions will not be diminished,” noted Setford. “These new healthy museum procedures will enable long-awaited public access to art so visitors can find solace and joy during these turbulent times.”
“I am incredibly proud of the team at TAM. When confronted with the challenges of a sudden closure, they rose to the occasion by creatively and collaboratively problem solving in order to continue to provide mission-led activities for our community,” stated Setford.
Though TAM’s doors will be open again, its role in the community as a place for lively discussions, community celebrations, and educational opportunities has shifted into digital spaces through at least the end of 2021. Via TAM”s website and social media TAM at Home will continue to offer free at-home art making activities, access to TAM’s permanent collection online, and other new programs.
Maintaining a Healthy and Safe Environment
In addition to a robust, regular cleaning and sanitization of all surfaces, handles, and other frequently touched areas, TAM will be working to implement additional air purification technology. This system will be installed in the existing HVAC system and will work to neutralize viruses (including coronaviruses), bacteria, pathogens, mold spores, harmful gases throughout the entire museum and add an additional layer of comfort and safety for our visitors and staff.
“We are very excited to be a leader with this new technology,” stated Setford. “It will add an additional layer of protection for both staff and visitors.”
In accordance with state guidelines, TAM will require the use of masks for staff and visitors 5 and older and strongly recommend masks for visitors under 4. Visitors will be spaced six feet (two meters) apart and will follow a dedicated path through the Museum. TAM will allow 50 visitors in the entire Museum at any one time.
To allow for enhanced cleaning, Museum hours will change to 10:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. Friday through Sunday. The Museum Store will be open during museum hours and will limit visitors to 5 at a time. Temporarily, TAM’s Art Studio, café, and hands-on gallery interactives will be unavailable, as will access to the lockers and coat check.
To Visit TAM
- Advanced purchase of timed admission tickets can be made online at www.tacomaartmuseum.org.
- Wear a mask to enter and visit the Museum. Should you forget your mask, they will be available free of charge at the welcome desk.
- Leave coats and large bags at home if possible as coat check and lockers will not be available.
- Follow the predetermined one-way path through the Museum to help ensure compliance with visitor spacing and capacity limitations.
- Utilize the contactless and motion-activated hand sanitizer stations that will be available at various locations in the Museum.
All dates, plans, and policies are subject to change.