All the way from middle-of-no-where Florida, Kristina has interned with MFA since January 2018. She attends St. John’s College in Annapolis, MD, with dreams of finding a role in arts management.
I was working my first job at a Vietnamese Fast Food Restaurant for a few months when Martha, my RA Freshman Year, asked if I was interested in art. What she didn’t know was that I was dreaming of curating my own shows at an art gallery someday. I quickly responded the obvious, and soon I was emailing the Executive Director Joann Vaughan about an intern position opening at MFA. I held my breath for a week, worried that my lack of background would sink my application. But the email came, and soon I found myself trying to find the MFA Circle Gallery on State Circle (as we all know, you really have to look for it).
It was January 2018 when I first interviewed for the position. I remember it well because I was 30 minutes early and very nervous. I guess you could already tell I was nervous by how early I was, oh well. This opportunity was exciting and relieving. My future was definitely not in the food business, but I did not know how to break into the art world.
I met with Joann, and the two fellows at the time, Kristen and Thomas. I can’t express enough how welcoming they were. They asked me to come in on Monday, and I went back to my dorm to call everyone I knew- I was ecstatic.
Here we are, almost two years later. This organization has taught me so many valuable things, but there’s one take away I want to elaborate on…
My first job was to take down all the vinyl from the walls with an Exacto knife (or my fingernails). It wasn’t what I imagined, but it sure did help me realize something. We all play a role, whether it be sweeping the floor or developing social media promotion for an event. It all matters.
It’s more than art, it’s a community of kind, talented, and supportive individuals that lift MFA up. I love interacting with artists picking up or dropping off their work, or volunteers when we need to open/close a show. The communication and multi-tasking skills I’ve developed over my time here are invaluable, all thanks to our community.
I wish organizations could just run off love because then MFA would be set. Alas, we have to keep the lights on somehow. That’s why this Giving Tuesday, I want to stress to you that your role is important, no matter what size or kind of donation you give us. Be it through money, or by volunteering, you develop this community and keep it thriving. You make this dream of mine a possibility, and I thank you.