How visiting a museum can help you find your muse
You cannot spell museum without it
I have always found museums to be so cool.
Perhaps it is because I am from a small town where the only museum is the Old Depot, which is really more of a local gift shop than a museum. When I went off to college, the first places I hit up were the Kresge Art Museum and the Museum of Natural History on the school campus. These places with all their interesting exhibits and inspiring art not only help pass a boring afternoon, but also helped fuel my own latent creativity. It also helped that they had reduced fees for students.
When I first moved to Northern California, the first thing that I did was ride the Bay Area Rapid Transit into San Francisco and visit the dozens of museums found in the city. From the famous artists who occupy the walls of the SFMOMA to the quirky arcade game museum on Fisher Men’s Wharf, there were so many interesting places to see that I spent the first few weeks “job hunting” in the city just so I could have an excuse to go to all the different museums.
Whether big or small, endowed or dependent on small donations, museums are the places where all the interesting little tidbits are kept. They are where a person goes in order to find out more about a particular subject, or in order to find a new subject to be interested in. Full of art and artifacts, historical objects and information, hanging out in a museum can be inspiring in a million different ways. Visiting the Hearst Castle (which is really a big museum in the shape of mansion) might help give you creative ideas for a screenplay you are working on. Or perhaps, that new Egyptian Artifact exhibit at your local museum of natural history will give you ideas and insight into a room you are decorating. Or perhaps, you see a painting on display that makes you interested in cubism.
Whatever creative goals you happen to have, taking the time out to visit a museum can help you discover new insights and find answers. Asking questions and actually taking the time to read the displays might help you discover answers to your own creative problems or give you new ideas. By being aware and opening yourself to learning, you just might be able to unclog the idea drain in your mind and release the flow of imagination.