My time volunteering at Jupiter Artland 20th August 2018/ Alessandra Montefiore I was a volunteer at Jupiter for the month of May 2018, and it was such a rewarding experience. Being surrounded by artwork while feeling like you're in the middle of a forest is such a unique way of interacting with art. At each corner you are surprised by what you could find; a statue of a little girl, troubled by an unknown cause, towering pillars that draw your attention to the sky and world outside of your own, or softly chiming bells that lure you to join them but are prevented geographically, which is where the wildlife has made their home. Engaging with people on the artwork is so fun, as even if you know the background on the work, conversations with others will bring new perspectives as well!

As someone with experience in multiple art organizations in Canada, it was great to see how an organization in Scotland structured itself, especially one with so many different aspects to it. It is a busy organization, with many events and programs to offer. There is something for everyone! What is great is how they want to make art available for every child to experience, and so a lot of the programming is made so that children can interact and appreciate artwork. They even had a dog day event, which I was extremely sad I had missed! As everyone who works there has a hand in creating the events, you can really see that the staff are passionate about the organization as a whole, rather than individual projects, which does make it feel like a bonded organization.  Conversations with the staff were really illuminating, and they would always be happy to answer any questions that I had regarding the structure. 

The staff at Jupiter are so friendly and accommodating, and they really treated everyone like family. They understand that you are a volunteer and doing it out of the goodness of your heart, and want to make sure you know you're appreciated. After some questionable volunteer experiences that I have had, it was really refreshing to be within an organization that really cares about their volunteers. The orientation is really nice as well, as an Art Guardian  you get a mini tour of the work, which really helps with more appreciation of certain pieces.

I hope to be back soon and visit the wonderful team and artwork at Jupiter Artland!

For more information about volunteering at Jupiter Artland, visit our volunteering page here.