Teens on Museums, Relevancy, and Community–Part 3

A view of the final celebration in progress. Photo by Front Room Photography

A view of the final celebration in progress. Photo by Front Room Photography

It’s my pleasure to share the work of the teen interns in this semester’s Satellite High School Program. Fifteen students from all around Milwaukee spent a semester exploring and discussing art, touring elementary school students, going behind the scenes, speaking to staff, and learning about career skills. Then, the teens created final projects expressing how art can be made relevant to our lives today and how the Milwaukee Art Museum can be an icon for the city, inside and out. This post, part 3 of 4, showcases the work of these students in their own words.

The third group of students created digital artworks for their final projects.

Alex answers audience questions. Photo by Front Room Photography

Alex answers audience questions. Photo by Front Room Photography

Alex's final project

Alex’s final project

Alex

“For me art is a method to express an idea or an emotion and making it visibly tangible. In my lifetime, I have learned a variety of lessons and seen many places, but sometimes those things are difficult to tell with words. Being able to ‘write’ it with colors and images, to convey the new ideas or feelings that are always flying through my head, is a relief. This work, titled ‘Artistically Insane’, was made for the Satellite Program to convey the answer to our two framing questions: How is the art museum an icon of the city and how does art relate to our lives today? My piece compares the artistic part of Milwaukee (the Museum) and the industrial/business part of Milwaukee (downtown). When we think of Milwaukee we usually think about beer, cheese, industry and business–not art. The upper image demonstrates that the Museum, although it is on the outskirts of Milwaukee, is a central part of the city. The lower two images show that human nature does not change overtime: people behave the same way today that they did 500 years ago. The person standing on the lakeside, holding the frame, represents: ‘this is what we hold as the city of Milwaukee.’ ”

* * *

Mike's final project

Mike’s final project

Mike talks about his final project. Photo by Front Room Photography

Mike talks about his final project. Photo by Front Room Photography

Mike

“The main idea for my project was to show someone looking up things about the artworks that are in the background of the image. I have always wanted to create something like this. My piece not only shows artwork that we looked at during the program, but also shows the skills that I have with Adobe Photoshop. It answers our framing question because it is from the perspective of someone who is my age, who likes art a lot, looking up facts about the art and artist so that they can know more about it. This program was a very good experience for me because I don’t really know many people that like art as much as I do. I also got to see how the museum is run and what goes on behind closed doors which I always find interesting. In the future, I would like to get the community more involved with the Museum and with the arts.”

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Sophie shows her final project. Photo by Front Room Photography

Sophie shows her final project. Photo by Front Room Photography

Sophie shares her final project. Photo by Front Room Photography

Sophie shares her final project. Photo by Front Room Photography

Sophie

“I created a mini advertising series to reflect my responses to the framing questions. When you come to the Museum, you should be able to change yourself a little bit with each visit or learn something new, to bring back to your community. I had three stages for that: first, you empower yourself, then you envision yourself, then connect to yourself and bring it back to your community. The three different posters work together as a cycle.”

Stay tuned next week for the final installment of the teens’ projects!

Chelsea Emelie Kelly is the Museum’s Manager of Digital Learning. In addition to working on educational technology initiatives like the Kohl’s Art Generation Lab or this very blog, she oversees and teaches teen programs. Say hello on Twitter @MAM_Chelsea.
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