Attendance will be limited and tickets sold online so visitors can social distance
After being closed for nearly three months because of COVID-19, local museums and art galleries are making plans to reopen.
The Maritime Museum’s director, Joost Schokkenbroek, said the museum had “lengthy conversations” with the City of Vancouver and public health officials before firming up its reopening plan.
“Staff will monitor the social distance (between patrons), and staff will monitor the number of people inside the building,” said Schokkenbroek.
“Cleaning will be done very regularly — all the different recommendations that WorkSafeBC, the provincial health officer and Coastal Health and other organizations have (instructed them to do), we’ll comply with.”
The Maritime Museum would typically have 150 to 200 people pass through daily. Now there will be a limit of 50 in the museum at any one time.
The Vancouver Art Gallery, on the other hand, can have 600 to 1,000 visitors daily. So their plan is to initially limit visitors to 115 an hour, spread out over several floors.
“We have much bigger capacity,” said VAG director Daina Augatis. “But we’ve done the math on keeping people six feet apart and how many people will fit, and taken it down from that.
“We feel having 115 people max should be very comfortable and will allow everybody to keep their physical distancing.”
Both institutions are encouraging people to buy their tickets online.
“Tickets will be sold via the internet, so we will try to minimize handling tickets and money as much as we can,” said Schokkenbroek. “That also gives us an indication of how many people we might expect on a day, or even a specific hour or part of the day, like the morning or afternoon.”
Augatis said this booking online even applies to art gallery members.
“Even if you’re a member and you can get in free, we’re requesting that people go online and request a specific time when they’re coming,” she said. “That will help us limit the numbers of people coming in, to make sure that it’s safe for everyone.”
At the Maritime Museum, there will be “one-way routing through the building” to keep it from getting clogged.
“We’ll have anchors pointing people in a specific direction,” said Schokkenbroek. “Some areas will be closed because they’re high touch areas. … In the children’s maritime discovery centre, some areas might be closed.”
The VAG will have security guards and volunteers to monitor visitors.
“If there’s a bit of a jam happening, that’s where our volunteers and guards will maybe ask people to move along, and maybe go to another floor,” said Augatis.
Staff at both institutions will be wearing masks in public areas, and it is “highly recommended” that visitors wear masks as well. But is not mandatory.
The Maritime Museum will reopen with a new show, On The Shore, featuring 44 paintings of the B.C. coast from the Bill and Mary Everett Collection, including two by works by Emily Carr and one by E.J. Hughes.
The VAG has a new exhibition culled from works in its collection, The Tin Man Was a Dreamer: Allegories, Poetics and Performances of Power. It was supposed to open in March but was delayed, as was another a new video and photographic installation, Matilda Aslizadeh’s Moly and Kassandra.
The VAG’s big summer show, Modern in the Making: Post-War Craft and Design in British Columbia, is being installed and will be opening July 18.
The Maritime Museum will be opening Thursday through Sunday, while the VAG will be open seven days a week.
“We would love to see the numbers come back to the museum, but we also anticipate that for the first few days or even weeks it might be a bit difficult,” said Schokkenbroek.
“People will be apprehensive, people will be anxious, maybe reluctant, and wait and see how things are being done.”
Original link: https://theprovince.com/news/local-news/vancouver-museums-and-art-galleries-start-reopening-next-week/wcm/041cbf09-62d0-4461-bc2c-1dbd12db25ed