Chrysler Museum of Art welcomes new school and teacher programs coordinator

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Chrysler Museum of Art welcomes new school and teacher programs coordinator
Before joining the Chrysler, Cayton was the associate director of education at The Contemporary Austin. Photo: Glenn Bashaw.

NORFOLK, VA.- The Chrysler Museum of Art welcomed Emily Cayton as the school and teacher programs coordinator. She holds more than a decade of museum and classroom experience and is eager to use the Chrysler’s permanent collection and changing exhibitions to help students and teachers discover new things about art and expression through tours, field trips, curriculum guides, interactive gallery materials and programs.

“A robust program of educational offerings is the heart of the Chrysler Museum’s mission. Emily Cayton brings energy, experience and the ideas to help us fulfill that mission,” said Museum Director Erik Neil.

Before joining the Chrysler, Cayton was the associate director of education at The Contemporary Austin. Her career also includes positions in Austin at Mindpop, the Visual Arts Center, Texas Performing Arts and the Blanton Museum of Art. In 2019, she was named Texas Museum Educator of the Year by the Texas Art Education Association.

“We are excited to have Emily on our team, especially following a school year that was challenging for both students and teachers,” said Allison Taylor, the Chrysler Museum of Art’s director of education. “As we prepare to welcome school groups back to the Museum in the fall for tours and other learning activities and host professional development workshops for teachers, we are confident that Emily’s expertise in museum education will bring enriching opportunities to students of all ages.”

Cayton recognizes the power of museum visits for both students and teachers. While students discover innovative non-verbal ways to express themselves, teachers benefit from watching their students learn in settings outside of the classroom. “Leaving the classroom during a school day and exploring a space such as a museum invites new ideas and connections. Museums offer spatial wonder and material discovery that live on for students long after their visit. An object on view may serve as a catalyst for students to share something personal, challenging or unfamiliar. Museum tours leave students with shared experiences that they can reflect back on for future assignments or storytelling,” Cayton said.

In 2018, Cayton co-founded Fancy Fancy Studios and Gallery in Austin, a complex with seven studio spaces, one mixed-use gallery and other facilities and amenities. Her passion for creating fuels her work as a museum educator as well. “As an artist, I love experimenting and discovering throughout the creative process. I also love those experiences as an educator. Early on in my personal commitment to creating, I realized that I value art so much I needed to find a way to share it with as many people as possible through art education. Art education as a discipline and course of study is full of opportunities to bridge disciplines and form connections using visual art and history,” Cayton said.

Cayton is a Hampton Roads native and started her museum career at the Virginia Museum of Contemporary Art. She is energized by the Chrysler’s multifaceted offerings and eager to share them with students and teachers. “I am obsessed with developing ways to nurture teachers as learners and artists, so I am looking forward to the various professional development offerings. Field trips are always the best part of any school year in my opinion, and after the unusual past school year, I cannot wait to welcome young people into the galleries to dive deep into works of art across time, space, and place,” Cayton said.

Cayton holds a master’s degree in art education with a focus on museum education from the University of Texas at Austin and a bachelor of fine arts degree in art education with a minor in art history from Virginia Commonwealth University.

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