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Women Making a Difference: MFAH chair of learning and interpretation

Caroline Goeser

HOUSTON – The halls of the Museum of Fine Arts Houston are lined with masterpieces by some of the world’s most famous artists. In each work, Caroline Goeser sees a rare chance to make a personal connection with history.

"You can see works of art from all cultures here. And there's something about seeing a work of art that makes history tangible,” Goeser said. "It just makes all the difference to know that somebody touched that, and somebody made it. And you can imagine, 'Oh, I can do that, too.' And you can feel connected to this person from France or this person from Africa."

Goeser wants to share that experience with museum patrons and community members alike. It is part of her mission as the W.T. and Louise J. Moran Chair of Learning and Interpretation.

Since she arrived at the Museum of Fine Arts Houston in 2014, Goeser has worked to oversee and expand the museum’s numerous educational programs that include everything from lectures to family art classes to workshops for teachers in the Houston area.

Her previous experience as an art historian and associate professor at the University of Houston School of Art helped to guide her to her position at the museum.

"I was really passionate about turning young students onto art and to the history of art," Goeser said. They might not have been majors, and they might have gone on to be engineers, but I gave them a sense of humanity."

One of her major tenets, Goeser says, is sharing the message that art should be accessible to all, regardless of age or background. 

“Sometimes people feel like the arts aren't for them, but we feel that they are. And that they can get a lot out of art. And that it can be fun, that going to a museum can be fun."

To learn more about some of the educational programs and initiatives at the Museum of Fine Arts Houston, visit its website.

The museum will host the opening of the new Glassell School of Art on Sunday, May 20. The event is free. To learn more, click here.