BRIAN FLETCHER is a Security Guard at the Ackland Art Museum.
How long have you been at the Ackland?
Since October 2011.
What brought you to the Ackland?
I had recently come to the university as a part-time contract guard through the Department of Public Safety, looking after various parking decks, dormitories, and other campus buildings-mostly third shift, overnight hours. I was approached by one of my supervisors, Steve Riddle, about some available hours at the Ackland Art Museum. I took him up on the offer, as I have always loved art — my late grandmother was a gifted oil painter, I took several art classes during my time at Campbell University, and I paint acrylics when time allows. The prospect of no longer starting my day at three o’clock in the afternoon or going to bed with the neighborhood rooster crowing didn’t discourage me either. I quickly came to really enjoy the Ackland and the people here. I learned that there was an opening for a full-time security officer, so I applied. I became a full-time guard here in January of 2012.
What do you do at the Ackland?
The most visible part of my position is, of course, protecting the Ackland’s art collection and assisting our guests. However, there are lots of behind-the-scenes tasks for which I, along with the rest of the Ackland security team, am responsible. Essentially, the museum is a 24-hour, seven-day-a-week operation requiring someone be on-call in the event of an alarm as well as someone to open and close the building for staff members, monitor the temperature and humidity in the galleries and art storage areas, and check the building and grounds for potential problems, among many other things.
What is a memorable Ackland experience?
This past June, the museum closed its galleries for nearly a month to replace the carpeting. It required lots of planning and organization, including the complete removal and reinstallation of artwork in the galleries. It was, in many, ways, a surreal experience, but the museum looked spectacular when it reopened in July.
What is your favorite thing about working at the Ackland?
I certainly love to help people, which my position allows me to do quite a lot. A favorite aspect of this is helping our guests — be they art connoisseurs, first-time art museum visitors, students here on assignment, or even some of the very artists whose works grace our galleries — make their own connections with the collection.
SEE. MORE. ART.: What is your favorite arts experience in the Triangle?
While I am partial to the Ackland and have most of my art experiences here, I also enjoy experiencing the many shows at the North Carolina Museum of Art in Raleigh. The North Carolina Symphony’s Independence Day performance at Koka Booth Amphitheatre in Cary is also a new favorite.