Trout Gallery Reopens to Students, Staff, and Faculty for the Semester

Lauren David '24, Staff Writer

On February 15th, 2021, Dickinson College’s Trout Gallery officially reopened for the semester, following a previous closure to in-person visits due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. The museum galleries are open Monday-Saturday from 10am-4pm, and are accessible only to Dickinson College students, staff, faculty and administrators. The museum was previously closed to in-person visits during the fall semester, but remained open virtually and offered a variety of remote services and videos for the Dickinson community. These remote services, known as Trout from Home, remain open and can be found at http://blogs.dickinson.edu/troutfromhome/

Philip Earenfight, Director of the Trout Gallery, spoke with The Dickinsonian about the reopening of the Trout Gallery and the different services that were created as a way to interact with the Dickinson community remotely. 

“The museum has been “open” virtually throughout the pandemic, providing a range of remote services but with the students returning this winter, it was particularly desirable to make the museum’s resources available to the campus community—in person,” Earenfight stated. “It is hoped that conditions on campus will reach a level of safety that will enable the museum to open to the public this summer or fall. But that decision remains with the college administration.”

In order to protect the health and safety of students and faculty, several guidelines and regulations have been established for those who enter the Trout Gallery. Masks are required to be worn at all times while inside, with a maximum limit of 12 guests who can enter the gallery at one time. Six feet of distance must be maintained between each guest to ensure social distancing, and air purifiers have been installed throughout the gallery along with plexi-glass barriers at the visitor service desk to help reduce the risk of transmission for COVID-19. Reservations are also now required to enter the Trout Gallery.

“In order to limit the flow of traffic and prevent lines from forming at the entrance (which only increases virus transmission), the museum has shifted to a timed reservation process via EngageD,” said Earenfight, “Visitors cannot enter without first obtaining a digital appointment. One need only use their cell-phone to click on the QR code to launch EngageD and reserve a spot. It takes only a minute. Members of the Dickinson Community can obtain an appointment with their phones on a drop in basis, so long as there are spaces available at that time.”

This reservation process on EngageD can be found at https://dickinson.campuslabs.com/engage/events?query=the%20trout%20gallery, or by using the QR code included at the end of the article.

Today, exhibitions remain on display at the Trout Gallery. These exhibits include Imagining the Divine: Religious Mythology and Art which features a collection focusing on spirituality and religious mythology in art that was curated by Abbie Cottle ‘20, and In Light of the Past: Experiencing Photography 1839-2021, which features various photographs and digital imagery curated by Art History majors Tenzin Crowley ‘21, Ana-Elena Karlova ‘21, Hill Gobourne ‘21, Emma Larson-Whittaker ‘21, Zuquin Qi ‘21, and Jackson Rhodes ‘21. This exhibition also includes a collection of “Snapshots” featuring cell-phone photographs created by members of the Dickinson community that catalouge their experiences during the pandemic. Imagining the Divine: Religious Mythology and Art remains on display from February 15, 2021 – April 17, 2021, while In Light of the Past: Experiencing Photography 1839-2021 is on display from March 5, 2021 – October 9, 2021. 

Earenfight expressed the Trout Gallery’s excitement to finally reopen to students and faculty.

“Museums deal with ideas captured in objects; abstractions held in physical things,” Earenfight said, “The emergency response to the pandemic has denied us the ability to share and experience such things, making the challenges of loss, physical and emotional separation, and isolation all the more acute. The Trout Gallery is excited to bring its collections and visitors together again, safely—in the same physical space—to reopen its doors and restore direct access to these important academic resources to the college community, so long as the health conditions permit.”Additional information about the Trout Gallery can be found at http://www.troutgallery.org. To make a reservation, this information can be found using the QR code below.