Museum Council

Member interview with Kristen Chassé

Kristen recently sat down with Hadley Powell, vice chair of Membership for the Museum Council Steering Committee. Please say hello to Kristen at the next Council event!

What brought you to Boston? What do you do for work or hobbies?

I moved to Boston for law school and stayed here for work. I'm from Maine, so being in Boston is a good fit—it's a great city, but also close enough to get home fairly easily. I am a lawyer in the Private Client Group at Ropes & Gray. I love traveling; I was in Scotland a few months ago and am planning a trip to Peru now. I try to spend as much time outdoors as possible. Of course, I also really enjoy spending time at museums.

How long have you been involved with the Museum Council? Why did you join?

Not for that long, but it's been lovely so far! I joined late last year. I spent so much of my free time at the MFA that it made sense to become a Council member. I moved to Boston specifically for law school, so I didn't have many friends outside of that community and was keen to meet more people. The Museum Council seemed like a wonderful combination of both interesting programming and an opportunity to make new friends.

Which aspects of the Museum Council surprised you when you joined?

I was surprised in a good way at how involved so many different people are! I think the Meet-Ups are wonderful in that they provide an opportunity for a broad range of members to lead an activity, which in turn leads to really diverse events.

Which Museum Council events have you particularly enjoyed?

All of the events have been great, but I have particularly enjoyed the opportunities to be in the Museum with fewer people at various openings and member nights. It's so wonderful and feels so special to have time to really linger in front of artwork away from crowds. I have also loved some of the smaller-scale events because I have met such great people at them.

What is your favorite piece of artwork in the Museum's collection?

This changes weekly, so be sure to ask me again later! But, generally, I really love all of the period rooms. I was an archeology major in college, and though I didn't make a career of it, I still really appreciate the historical aspect of the period rooms. I love walking into them and feeling like the room itself is a piece of art—the woodwork, the floorboards, the ceilings, all the details of the carvings and decorations. I love thinking about the history of the rooms, who the craftsmen were, and the lives that were lived in these spaces. The Hamilton Palace Dining Room is gorgeous, and the detailed carvings of the Newland House Drawing Room, the wallpaper in the Shepard Parlorit's all just wonderful.