Jules Bastien-Lepage (French, 1848–1884), Le Père Jacques (Woodgatherer), 1881. Oil on canvas. Miwlaukee Art Museum, Layton Art Collection, Gift of Mrs. E. P. Allis and her daughters in memory of Edward Phelps Allis L102. Photo credit: John R. Glembin.
One of the things that I enjoy about being a curator is that I am always learning something. Here is one example.
In the middle of August, the Cornish American Heritage Society held their “Gathering of the Cornish Cousins” in Milwaukee. The event offered talks and workshops on all things Cornish, and one of the organizers had asked me to do a presentation on the artists of the Newlyn School.
I knew a little about Cornwall from visits to the southwestern part of Wisconsin, plus I loved pasties, but I knew nothing about art in Cornwall. A quick search told me that they were a group of artists that, in the 1880s, formed an art colony in a Cornish fishing village called Newlyn. So, I said, sure, why not?
And now, after a year of reading about the Newlyn artists and looking closely at the artwork produced by them, I’m so glad that I did!
Liz and Justine watch the final project videos. Photo by Front Room Photography
In part two of my three posts on this year’s Satellite teen program, I’m sharing the unexpected data that helped me see the bigger picture about my students’ ability to reflect thanks to being in the program. Continue reading
Harry Bertoia (American, b. Italy, 1915–1978), Dandelion, 1970. Gold-plated bronze and beryllium. Milwaukee Art Museum, Gift of Mrs. Harry Lynde Bradley M1975.131. Photo credit: P. Richard Eells. © 2010 Estate of Harry Bertoia / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York
Now that it’s finally starting to feel like summer, let’s talk about dandelions. Sure, they’re technically weeds, and you probably don’t want them taking over your lawn. But it’s fun to make wishes on the white puffy ones, even if it does scatter seeds and just increases the dandelion population exponentially. Continue reading
The mural in progress. Photo by Front Room Photography
There’s a reason why the summer teen program at the Milwaukee Art Museum is called ArtXpress. In less than a month, a group of sixteen high school students came together to absorb the current Kandinsky: A Retrospective
exhibition, digest the meaning of abstraction, and collectively orchestrate their own Kandinsky-esque abstract mural to be blown up onto an Milwaukee County Transit System (MCTS) bus that will travel routes all over the city. In addition, the teens also mentored Milwaukee Public Schools elementary schoolers through the exhibition, challenging the teens to more deeply articulate the important aspects of Kandinsky’s pioneering work in abstract art. Continue reading
Luis and Rosaly show their families the Museum. Photo by Front Room Photography
Over the past four years, I have worked with hundreds of Milwaukee-area teens who love art, and who, over their time in teen programs at the Milwaukee Art Museum, grow to love museums as well.
I have always had a sense that my students grow over their time at the Museum. This year, though, to really study that growth, we designed our longstanding Satellite High School Program as a year-long experience to explore exactly how weekly sessions at an art museum might change the thinking of our teen participants. To that end, our program outcome for students was that they would show an increased ability to reflect upon their own experiences and performance. Continue reading