Chloé Risto and Kevin Byerley

Chloé Risto and Kevin Byerley

Name: Chloé Risto and Kevin Byerley
Member Level: Contributor
Member Since: Chloé Risto: 2012, Kevin Byerley: 2010


What has been your favorite exhibition at the museum?
CR: I really enjoyed the 2012 Great Rivers Biennial. The premise of the program is so neat, and we, as members, are spoiled by these talented local artists. I was introduced to the work of David Johnson at this particular show; I was an instant fan and am to this day. I’m also thrilled to say I was recently gifted my first David Johnson print for Christmas. Super awesome!

Do you have a favorite program or event?
KB: I really enjoy the member programs that feature curatorial explanations of the exhibitions, particularly Breakfast with the Curators and the Patron Preview programs. I always leave with an extraordinary amount of information about the works that I would not have otherwise been able to ascertain on my own. Plus, the settings for these programs are a little more relaxed and intimate than some of the other events.

CR: Some of my friends joke that I’m “always at CAM” for some event or program. One of my recent favorites is the Member Book Club. I’ve been a bookworm since I was little, and I was thrilled to hear that CAM was starting their own Book Club. I’m having a great time reading the different selections, and I love gathering together as a small group to discuss our thoughts and reactions.

Why are you a member of CAM?
KB: I am a member of CAM because I wholeheartedly believe in the organization. I love the thought-provoking aspects of the exhibits and programs as well as the inviting and open feel to the experience. I’m proud of what CAM has been able to accomplish in its relatively young existence, and I’m even more excited for the museum’s future. As a devoted member, I hope to be a part of that future for a long time to come.

Why would you encourage others to become members of CAM?
CR: Why wouldn’t I? In all seriousness, I think people should become members of CAM in order to learn, give, and engage. Becoming a member allows you to learn more about the world of contemporary art and how it relates to you; it offers you a way to give to an organization that helps St. Louis and Grand Center become a fun, diverse, educational place to be; and it offers you a space to not only engage with the pieces on the wall but the people who make up the amazing space.

What was your first experience at CAM?
CR: Breakfast with the Curators, November 4, 2011—which was also my first date with Kevin. I was nervous (for obvious reasons), but I remember the staff being so kind, and it was a really cool experience walking around the museum listening to the curators explain the pieces and what the artists’ goals were.

What made you join the Museum?
KB: I came for the art and stayed for the people. Seriously. I was lured in by the brilliant programming, but I became really inspired by the great ambassadors that work for and volunteer with CAM. Everyone is such a joy to interact with. Joining the museum seemed like the best way to stay connected to all of these great people!

Why is CAM important to St. Louis?
CR: Art in general is important to all cities, including St. Louis. I believe it is also important to embrace the diversity within art. I think St. Louis is a richer city for having multiple art museums and galleries. CAM is essential to St. Louis, as it offers a safe space for people to get a feel for what this “whole contemporary art thing” is all about. Its impact on the community—as not only a place to view incredible pieces but also as an educational resource—is a great one.

What excites you the most about CAM’s future?
KB: I am really excited about the 2014 Young Friends membership series! The Junior Board has worked with the CAM staff to put together new and exciting opportunities within the Young Friends membership level. Very soon these events will make their way onto the CAM event calendar. Stay on the lookout. It’s going to be a very fun year for our Young Friends members!


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