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Volunteer Spotlight: Sharon Horwart

volunteerspotlight_sharonhorwart

Career Information

I worked for GTE directories company in Lincoln, Nebraska, for over 24 years. In 1995, the family moved to Bella Vista, where I worked in banking for 12 years. As much as these positions were different, they were still the same: determining the customer’s needs and how to best meet those needs.

Hobbies/Activities/Interests

I have always enjoyed gardening, reading, and travel. Recently, I’ve discovered the many benefits of yoga.

Favorite artwork or space at the Museum

There is so much to choose from at Crystal Bridges. My favorite artwork is a toss-up: George de Forest Brush’s Indian and the Lily or Joan Mitchell’s Untitled.

My favorite spot is Eleven, at night.

The reflection on the ponds is so calming, almost hypnotic.

How did you learn about the Museum and what prompted you to get involved?

Several friends and I were discussing the articles about Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art. We wanted to be a part of it! Having recently retired, I wanted to be involved with an organization that would be public service, yet a learning opportunity.

In what ways have you been involved as a volunteer with the Museum thus far?

I have been a Gallery Guide since the 2011 opening, and in 2013 became a Museum Guide. What keeps you coming back to volunteer? I continue to volunteer for a number of reasons: pride in the Museum; the wonderful other volunteers and museum staff; the learning opportunities about all types of art; the ever-changing exhibitions; the interaction with guests from all walks of life, all around the world; and the infectious enthusiasm of the students/children.

What do you enjoy most about your volunteer experience?

I enjoy interacting with the guests. Many times they come up with wonderful new ways to view/ interpret a work of art.

What have you learned from or how have you been personally affected by your experience with the Museum?

I love the learning experience that Crystal Bridges offers. Not just the paintings, but the architecture and nature on the grounds.

Do you have a funny or inspirational story you can briefly tell about your volunteer experience?

During the Coca Cola give-away, (Andy Warhol), a guest returned to the lobby to tell us that another guest had dropped and broken their bottle. She gave them her Coke bottle. Quickly, a guard was notified, the mess was being cleaned up, and our guest had already gone.

Anything else you would like to share?

I love watching the children leading their parents through the galleries, explaining different works and coaching proper etiquette. i.e. where to stand, how to observe, no touching the art or leaning on walls.

Do you have any advice for individuals considering volunteering with Crystal Bridges?

My advice to anyone wanting to be a volunteer: there is a position for all interests. It’s a WIN-WIN for everyone. So, Just Do It!

veronica.bagwell@crystalbridges.org'
Veronica Bagwell
Digital Media Designer

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