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Thinking Museum only work with the best guides. Our team of enthusiastic and passionate educators, art historians, facilitators and professionals are hand-picked by our founder, Claire Bown for their ability to create museum experiences that are engaging, informative and interactive. Our guides don’t work from scripts and will never lecture – instead they are trained to engage all our visitors in conversation about the about the works of art or objects they are exploring.

Here are the ‘thinkers’ that make up our team…

Claire Bown

CLAIRE BOWN

OWNER

Claire Bown is an experienced museum educator and the founder of Thinking Museum which designs high quality, innovative learning activities, tours, workshops and training for museums, private individuals and business. Thinking Museum specialises in the use and application of thinking routines from Visible Thinking and Visual Thinking Strategies. Claire developed the first Dutch museum programmes to use Visible Thinking at the Tropenmuseum in 2011. You can find more information about Claire here.

Sander

SANDER DAAMS

GUIDE

As a freelance art professional, Sander provides art education services for the Stedelijk Museum, Rijksmuseum and Van Gogh museum amongst others. Sander is skilled at leading and developing art and educational tours, workshops and trainings for audiences of all ages – and in particular, children, families and adults. Sander has a particular interest in developing programmes for groups with special educational needs and for people with visual impairment.

GUNDY VAN DIJK

MUSEUM EDUCATOR AND TRAINER

Gundy van Dijk is a museum professional with more than 10 years experience. She has worked as a museum educator for several museums in Amsterdam at the Maritime Museum, Amsterdam Museum, Resistance Museum, as well as a Senior Educator at the Tropenmuseum. Since 2014, Gundy runs her own company Thinking Education through which she offers training courses for museum docents and concepts on visitor participation. She is Project Leader for Education at Het Scheepvaartmuseum.

DANIELLE CARTER

GUIDE

Danielle Carter is a strong believer that the museum is for everyone. She studied Art History, Studio Art and Museum Studies in her sunny home state of Florida. During her studies, she started working with kids in arts and museum education, leading to her interest in how children interact with museum objects and how they learn in the museum context. In 2013 she moved to the Netherlands to pursue a Master’s degree in Arts and Heritage: Policy, Management and Education, during which she researched how pre-school children learn from museum objects.

Anita

ANITA LIEMBURG

GUIDE

Besides working as a museum educator at the Jewish Historical Museum, Amsterdam Historical Museum, Rijksmuseum, Stedelijk Museum, the Rembrandt House, Anne Frank House, Paleis Soestdijk and the Kunstkijkuren, Anita runs her own company ‘Muzeaal Verhalen’ developing educational programmes for cultural institutions. Trained in Visual Thinking Strategies, Anita also runs training courses teaching people interactive and participative guiding skills.

Sabry Amroussi

SABRY AMROUSSI

GUIDE

Sabry Amroussi in an art historian working and living in Amsterdam. After his studies in art history at the University of Amsterdam he specialised in books, prints and multiples and used this knowledge to run an antiquarian art bookshop.
He is a true all-rounder; from Jewish history of Amsterdam to the Dutch Golden Age, he likes to tell compelling stories with knowledge  in a casual and humourous way. Sabry teaches at various academies, lectures, and is currently working on a book on “Art Historical Oddities”.

Larisa Sjoerds

LARISA SJOERDS

GUIDE

Larisa Sjoerds is an art teacher, museum docent and artist. She is passionate about interactive tour guiding techniques, facilitating creative processes and developing visual literacy.  She designs educational programmes for the Dordrecht Museum and Stedelijk Museum Schiedam.  As an artist her favorite medium is drawing and painting, she creates large and intriguing ink drawings of abstracted human figures. She is always keen to have the ‘my little brother could do that’ conversation about art, especially if people are open to exploring different perspectives!

WENDY FOSSEN

GUIDE

Wendy Fossen, owner of Casa dell’Arte, works as a freelance art historian. Wendy has been giving art history courses in both Dutch and English for over 8 years now. She also works as a museum guide at the Gemeentemuseum and Mauritshuis in The Hague, and as a tour guide in Italy. Wendy graduated at the University of Kent in Canterbury, England and at the University of Leiden and Amsterdam.

EVE KALYVA

GUIDE

Eve Kalyva is an art critic and a writer. She has a PhD in Art History, has worked as lecturer in Europe and Latin America, and has collaborated with art institutions as curator, critic and artist in residence. Eve is interested in the relation between art and society in both its historical and contemporary expressions. As a museum educator, Eve encourages others to engage critically with what they see, relate it to the world around them and consider: how does looking at art make us feel? What ideas does it enable us to think? Apart from everything related to art, Eve loves travelling and is fascinated by world cultures, languages and world-views.

STEFANIE VAN GEMERT

GUIDE

Stefanie van Gemert brings more than 7 years of museum experience to Thinking Museum. Stefanie is a culturista with a PhD in Dutch and English Language and Culture from University College London. Currently living in Amsterdam, Stefanie works as a freelance Educator at the Van Gogh Museum, Tropenmuseum & Frans Hals Museum.

Stefanie gets on with all age and audience groups. She is convinced art is for everybody. She enjoys applying Visible Thinking routines to her museum experiences to create a fun, energetic and safe atmosphere for all participants to share their ideas and to explore and learn together.

Amanda Beal Barut

AMANDA BEAL BARUT

PROGRAMME MANAGER

Amanda is a program manager with experience in the private, diplomatic and public sectors. Her work has taken her to Japan, Korea, Australia, the UK and northern Europe. She is involved in strategic planning, communication, branding and identity and relationship management. She brings a strong international marketing and arts management background to Thinking Museum. Her interest in the future and sharing good ideas is what draws her to the city of Amsterdam and in particular to the vibrant museum culture of this unique city.

MAYA MUTLU

GUIDE

Maya Mutlu studied Art History and Philosophy at the University of Amsterdam. After 10 years of experience in the field as a museum guide and workshop teacher, she feels very much at home in museums. As a mediator between arts and people, museums and their visitors, she tries to make them feel at home too. By forging associations with respect to age, cultural background, knowledge and different viewpoints, she aims to create an open-minded environment.
Her biggest source of inspiration is children. Children speak freely and see and think without judgement. As a guide, she tries to look at art as though she is seeing it for the first time.  Her motto: anybody can enjoy art, as long as they are given the right tools.

SILVIA OWEN

BOOKINGS COORDINATOR

Silvia is the bookings coordinator for Thinking Museum and is happy to answer all your tour questions.  She’s an American expat who’s lived in Amsterdam going on 12 years and has a deep love for this beautiful city.