Taylor Alber is a social media strategist, journalist and creator for the TikTok account Museum TikTok. Taylor first launched her TikTok account during the global pandemic, and began sharing her museum and gallery visits with the world. She quickly amassed a following and captivated art enthusiasts worldwide, sharing informative and inspirational content to her channel. With degrees in Art from both The George Washington University and Sotheby’s Institute of Art in London and a handful of years working in Communications for the arts, Taylor has cultivated a deeply rooted passion for the arts & culture, which she enjoys sharing with the world.
AF: Hi Taylor! We are absolutely delighted to chat with you. To start this interview off, we want to ask you our classic first question: Where are you from and what is the art community like there?
TA: Hi! I grew up in Vero Beach Florida. It’s a small beach town on a barrier island along Florida’s East Coast. Growing up my parents would always take me to the Vero Beach Museum of Art, which instilled my love for art at a young age. Every summer I would attend art classes at the museum with my friends. The museum really holds a special place in my heart because it allowed me to discover my passion and creativity for the arts.
AF: What was your first ever job? What did you learn from this experience?
After finishing my Master’s Program at the Sotheby’s Institute of Art in London, I moved to New York and got my first job as a Gallery Assistant at a contemporary art gallery. I learned so much about the inner workings of the art world from this job. Starting as an assistant provided me with a Birds Eye view of the industry and exposed me to the numerous positions and roles within the art world. I was able to get a better understanding for the responsibilities of each department and this helped me decide what I wanted to do next with my career.
AF: You are the face behind the popular TikTok account, @museumtiktok! When did you first start @museumtiktok, why, and what have you learned through this experience?
TA: I first started Museum TikTok in 2020 during the pandemic. TikTok had just started to take off and I was seeing so many creative and fun videos – from beauty and fashion to lifestyle and cooking. Witnessing TikTok’s unique ability to connect and educate people across various industries, I became inspired by its potential to spark interest in the art world in a more accessible and contemporary way.
It’s been exciting to witness the genuine enthusiasm and interest that people have for art. Seeing the engagement and excitement from viewers/comments on videos I post has been gratifying. A lot of the time people will tag their friends in the comments of my videos and make plans to visit exhibitions or museums. To see that level of excitement and interest is super rewarding.
AF: What are your best tips for running a successful TikTok or social media account?
TA: : I’d say the most important thing is to be passionate about what you’re posting. The more enthusiasm you have in your account’s subject, brand or topic, the more you’ll be motivated to consistently create content and it will resonate with your audience better.
Secondly, and this applies to most social media platforms, is maintaining a consistent posting schedule. When starting your account aim to post at least every other day. This will help keep viewers engaged and help you to establish a cadence that works best for you.
Lastly, don’t be afraid to venture into uncharted territory and experiment with new approaches to your content. Embrace the process of trial and error. It’s important to remember that not every video or post will receive an overwhelming number of views or engagement. However, by continuously trying new things and learning from the feedback you receive, you’ll refine your content and discover what your audience likes the most.
AF: What has been your favorite TikTok trend recently?
TA:I’m really loving all the different summer travel videos that have been on my FYP lately. There’s a whole sub-category of “European Summer” videos where people are sharing their travel tips, itineraries and even outfit ideas for each destination. I love getting inspiration for planning my next trip from TikTok.
AF: In your videos, you document art exhibitions happening all around the world! Where is your favorite place you’ve traveled and why?
TA: While it may sound cliché, Paris will always hold a special place in my heart as it is undeniably a Mecca for art lovers. The city has some of the best museums and collections in the world. I recently had the opportunity to visit the Picasso Museum in Paris this month, and they have an amazing exhibition of Picasso’s works curated by designer Paul Smith. I highly recommend seeing this exhibition while it’s still up this Summer!
Another place I love visiting is Vienna, Austria. It’s such a beautiful city filled with incredible art, architecture, and history. They have some really exceptional museums like the Belvedere and the Albertina and they have one of the best Opera houses in the world. Also, I LOVE coffee and the city is known for their coffee and coffee houses, so that’s another added bonus!
AF: What’s something you hope you can do more of in the coming months?
TA: This year, I ventured into freelance writing focused on art and travel. I’d really like to explore more art-centric destinations and uncover hidden gems so I can share the story with others.
AF: As you know, Art Frankly is a community that cares about job transparency and supporting fellow art professionals. What is the best piece of advice you can give about working in the art world?
TA:I think it’s important to remember that not every job you have (especially your first job) will spark your passion. However, try to gain and learn as much as you can from the experience and this will help you focus and work towards what you really want to do with your career down the line. Whether you love or hate the job, take with you everything you can from the experience, acquire new perspectives, and apply it to your next role. The art world has so many different careers and facets within it so try out your passions and focus on your strengths.
AF: How do you think the art world can become more transparent?
TA: There seems to be a general lack of transparency about the hiring process and salaries within the art world. I think if more people and employees spoke openly about it and their experiences working within the industry, galleries and institutions might follow.
AF: What can we look forward to from you and @museumtiktok in the coming months?
TA: Although I am currently based in New York, I have the flexibility to work remotely, so I’m really looking forward to having the opportunity to travel and showcase a wide range of exhibitions from various locations around the world. I’m hoping to check off some of spots off my travel bucket list and create content along the way for @museumtiktok!
AF: Thank you, Taylor, for participating in Frank Talks! It has been wonderful chatting with you. To finish off, we want to know: If you could own work by 5 different artists/craftspeople, who would be in your collection?
TA: Wow, that’s a tough question! My answer really depends on the day you ask me but today I’d pick Jean-Honoré Fragonard, Edgar Degas, Nicolas Party, Tomás Sánchez and Claude Monet.