Today @ AK

Docent Program

Docent Dorothy Tao leads students on an Art'scool tour (Photograph by Tom Loonan)

Docents play a vital role in educating and engaging visitors to the Albright-Knox Art Gallery. If you enjoy studying and discussing art and like sharing your passion for art with others, you may want to consider becoming a docent.  

What are docents?
Docents are specially trained volunteers that lead tours for visitors of all ages to the Albright-Knox. Docents help engage visitors to the museum by discussing works in the Albright-Knox’s Collection and on view in special exhibitions. More than educating visitors, docents find creative ways to engage with art, resulting in an interactive tour experience.

What is involved in becoming a docent?
Every other year, the Albright-Knox’s Education department leads a new training course for interested participants. Participants will need to complete the intensive ten-week program, which includes in-depth study of various movements in art history; study and analysis of key works of art, including works in the Albright-Knox’s Collection; and exercises in how to engage visitors in a wide-variety of tour types. 

Each session will include a mix of intensive lectures and interactive engagement exercises. Participants will need to do substantial reading each week to prepare for the next session, complete writing exercises, complete written exams, and lead a final tour before completing the course. Grades and evaluations will be taken into consideration and must meet established passing levels before participants are accepted into the museum’s docent program. While some books will be provided each week, participants will be required to purchase select books in advance of the start of the training course.

Please note that participants who do not successfully complete the course will not be accepted into the docent program.

What is required of participants once they have successfully completed the Docent Training Course?
Once docents are accepted into the program, they must:

  • Be available to give at least two tours per week. 
  • Attend quarterly Saturday training sessions.
  • Attend new exhibition trainings throughout the year.

If you are interested in becoming a docent, and would like to be informed when the next class is scheduled, please contact Lindsay Kranz, Associate, Education Department, at, or 716.270.8276.