Teen Voices in the Museum

Milwaukee Art Museum Satellite Program group, 2013-14

Milwaukee Art Museum Satellite Program group, 2013-14

Teen programs provide a very different kind of opportunity for museums to experiment with interpretation. Because many teens participate in multiple programs for extended lengths of time, they become advocates and resources for our museums and collections. Here at the Milwaukee Art Museum, I’ve been experimenting with interpretation strategies that go deeper than one-day-only programs, providing not only learning experiences for students involved, but powerful tools and content for the Museum, too. Continue reading

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German Tankards and Steins: Part 2–Stoneware Vessels

Probably Raeren, Rhineland, Germany. Jug, ca. 1583. Salt-glazed stoneware with later silver mount. Milwaukee Art Museum, Gift of Richard and Erna Flagg, M1991.86. Photo credit John Nienhuis

Probably Raeren, Rhineland, Germany. Jug, ca. 1583. Salt-glazed stoneware with later silver mount. Milwaukee Art Museum, Gift of Richard and Erna Flagg, M1991.86. Photo credit John Nienhuis

Many people probably thing that international trade and technical innovations is something new: it’s important now, in the digital age; it was important in the 20th century, and perhaps influential as far back as the industrial revolution of the 19th century. But those that study the history of decorative arts know that international trade and technical innovations go back much further! Continue reading

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How to Engage Teens at the Museum

Sara shares her thoughts on Jean Joseph Benjamin Constant’s “Evening on the Seashore—Tangiers.” Photo by Nate Pyper

Sara shares her thoughts on Jean Joseph Benjamin Constant’s “Evening on the Seashore—Tangiers.” Photo by Nate Pyper

How do art museums engage teenagers? We offer a number of internships at the Milwaukee Art Museum for teens, but for most students, their first (and sometimes only) exposure to the Museum is through a school field trip. In collaboration with our docent corps, we asked the students themselves how to engage teenagers in the galleries. If you’re curious about what teens said and how we’ve used their suggestions, read on! Continue reading

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Milwaukee Studio Visit: Author and Illustrator Lois Ehlert–Part Two

Lois and Donele. Photo by Megan Yanz Photography

Lois and Donele. Photo by Megan Yanz Photography

I recently had the privilege of visiting the home and studio of Lois Ehlert, Milwaukee’s award-winning children’s book author, along with my photographer friend Megan Yanz. Ehlert published a personal and inspiring new book in March called The Scraps Book: Notes from a Colorful Life, which you can learn more about in our previous post about our visit to Ehlert’s studio. Ehlert’s home, as you can see from Megan’s photos that accompany this post, is a welcoming gallery-like space that deserves its own story. Please enjoy this continuation of our visit to Lois Ehlert’s home and studio, and note that there is a giveaway at the end of this post. Continue reading

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Milwaukee Studio Visit: Author and Illustrator Lois Ehlert

Stack of books. Photo by Megan Yanz Photography

Stack of books. Photo by Megan Yanz Photography

Our senses were first enticed by the lovely scent of fresh, natural flowers as we approached Lois Ehlert’s apartment in a beautiful old downtown building on an otherwise blustery day.

Ehlert welcomed me and Megan Yanz so Megan could photograph her remarkable collection of folk art while I learned more about Ehlert’s newest publication for children, The Scraps Book: Notes from a Colorful Life (a limited quantity of copies signed by the author are available to buy online). With the feature exhibition Uncommon Folk: Traditions in American Art now on view at the Art Museum, the timing was perfect to visit Ehlert’s cozy, artful and welcoming home.

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