Things We Love: Picks from Lauren Emond

Laura Emond
Lauren Emond (right), photo courtesy Lauren Emond

Lauren Emond is the manager for community engagement at the Columbus Museum of Art, and loves collaborating with other artists. She has co-created a monthly opportunity to Think Like an Artist at the Museum with local musicians, artists and drink partners. The next Think Like an Artist starts at 6:30 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 1, at the Columbus Museum of Art. At the event, artist Renee Zamora, Latino Arts for Humanity and CMA will celebrate Dia de Los Muertos. Design your own sugar skull, play loteria (Mexican bingo), add to the ofrenda (Day of the Dead altar) and get your tarot cards read, alongside craft cocktails and dancing to the sounds of Al Son Del Iya. Cost of the program is included with Thursday evening admission, which is $5 for non-members and free for CMA members. Here are a few things Emond loves.

The Window Cafe

I love this little, donation-based coffee house in Franklin Park. The owner, Billy, plans to open a full shop down the street, but got started serving the community earlier this summer. He literally opened a window on the side of his house and invited neighbors to enjoy a small menu of coffee and homemade breakfast items. The cafe even started hosting community conversations and highlighting neighbors that are artists and musicians on Sundays.

Creative thinkers

I love the role artists play to imagine, question, connect and explore. Creatives question business as usual. They act and do hard things. They don't wait to be invited to the table. They take their seat, collaborate, lift up others doing meaningful work and STAY BUSY. My only problem is finding time to support and experience it all.


I love everything about food and the stories it can tell. The history and politics of food, the traditions and stories that are passed down from previous generations, the flavors, the experimentation — I love all of it. There's nothing quite like an evening of cooking for and with friends.

The Libby app

It's a game changer. I've been telling everyone about it. You can connect to your public library account and download audio and e-books for free. You can even send library books to your Kindle. My goal is to simultaneously download the same audio and e-book so that I can get through my long reading list faster.


I love wandering through galleries, discovering artists new to me, considering new ideas, slowing down and gathering inspiration. I also love working in the museum field, collaborating with artists and having the opportunity to reimagine how art museums can lead to the kinds of engagement that matter both now and for the future. I'm currently writing this from Minneapolis, where I'm convening with colleagues at MASS Action (Museum As Site for Social Action), and I'm excited to be part of CMA as we enhance our role as a place for social discourse by launching the Center for Art and Social Engagement in 2019.