Peggy Guggenheim internships

Art History is privileged to have been invited to participate in the Peggy Guggenheim Intern Programme in Venice.

This two month internship programme targets current art history students and recent graduates who are committed to furthering their Art History studies at the University. It offers the opportunity to gain first-hand practical experience of museum operations, familiarity with an important collection of modern art, and immerses them in the cultural life of the city of Venice.

2012 / 2013 Peggy Guggenheim Internship Recipients

University of Auckland Art History students, Jonathan Barnett and Renisa Maki were overjoyed to learn they would be spending their first months of 2013 in Venice, Italy. Both are recipients of the 2012/ 2013 Wright Family Scholarships for internships at the Peggy Guggenheim Museum.

Renisa Maki is currently ensconced in her internship and just three days after Christmas Jonathan flies out to join her, commencing his on 30th December.

“While it’s a little daunting, I’m very excited - There is so much I’m looking forward to; from my daily experiences at the Guggenheim, to visiting places like Ferrara and Cinque Terre, and finishing my two months off with a trip to Paris to visit the Louvre,” says Jonathan.

The Guggenheims were a wealthy American family who were great patrons of art. The Venice collection belonged to Peggy Guggenheim, with works from the modernist epoc including Picasso and Braque. The collection is presented in her home, set amidst her furnishings which provide a personal landscape to the works.

“It’s the combination of the Peggy Guggenheim collection, and its being held under the roof of her home, the Palazzo Venier dei Leoni, that makes the Venice gallery so unique compared to other Guggenheim galleries.” says Jonathan.

“It will be amazing to live among such a collection. I’ve never had the opportunity to keep revisiting artworks, but according to Justin Patton, author of ‘How to look at a painting,’ the more time you spend in front of a piece, the more is revealed to you. Current lifestyles don’t allow much time for patient observation, but working daily amidst these paintings will give me just that. I imagine everyday will strengthen my knowledge.”

Currently working at the Auckland City Central Library, Jonathan has developed a wealth of skills he knows will support his intern role. Participating in the daily operations of the museum four days a week, interns are involved in everything from museum security and gallery management, to leading guided tours, and workshops with children.

“Working at the library is all about providing a service, and being a source of knowledge. I’m hoping this will provide a good foundation for my role at the Guggenheim,” he says.

You can share Renisa’s Guggenheim experience via her blog.

Jonathan and Renisa completed their Bachelor of Arts degrees in 2012; Jonathan with a double major in English and Art History, and Renisa with a double major in Art History and Political Studies. Both plan postgraduate studies in Art history at the University of Auckland for 2013.

“Past interns have enthused about the very valuable experience the internship has offered and without the support of David Wright and his family we would not have been able to continue this important relationship which offers such a great opportunity for Art History students,” says Caroline Vercoe, the University of Auckland’s Head of Art History.