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Friday Photos: Summer Progress

August 28, 2015

This summer, visitors to the Center for Creative Connections have participated in a communal drawing activity called Community at LARGE. Individual visitors enlarged one small portion of Progress Suite by Luis Jimenez and added their drawing to a large gridded wall, so that collectively they have created an enlarged reproduction of the original lithograph. Initially, it was exciting to watch as the blank wall slowly filled up with drawings and the image became recognizable. But now that each square has been drawn, the fun part has been watching as the drawing changes from day-to-day with the addition of new visitor contributions.

Here are a few short flipagrams of the evolution of my favorite squares.

 

 

 

Stop by the Center for Creative Connections during your next visit to the Dallas Museum of Art to make your own contribution to our communal drawing. Look for more photos of this project on Instagram and Twitter with #DMAlivingdrawing.

Jessica Fuentes
C3 Gallery Manager

All in the Family: A Community Partnership with the South Dallas Cultural Center

August 25, 2015

Families from the South Dallas Cultural Center are regulars here at the DMA. For six months out of the year, a small group come to the Museum every second Sunday of the month to explore and make artworks together. Below are images of our Museum adventures from this past group:

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In July, we capped off another wonderful year of our Second Sunday partnership with an exhibition of our creations at the South Dallas Cultural Center.

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Also on display at the Center was a street art project created in collaboration with a group of teens at the Center’s summer program.

Thank you, South Dallas families, for another wonderful partnership! We look forward to the creativity our next group will bring!

Amy Copeland
Manager of Go van Gogh and Community Teaching Programs

Friday Photos: Breaking Bread

August 21, 2015
Vincent Van Gogh, Sheaves of Wheat, July 1890, Dallas Museum of Art, The Wendy and Emery Reves Collection

Vincent Van Gogh, Sheaves of Wheat, July 1890, Dallas Museum of Art, The Wendy and Emery Reves Collection

Bread and butter is my go-to snack. So this summer, when I saw a Bread & Rolls class at El Centro’s Food & Hospitality Institute, I decided to take my museum educator hat off for a couple hours each week and jump into the world of bread-baking.

The course outline reminded me of walking through the DMA’s encyclopedic collection—we traveled the wide world of bread, from Indian Aloo Paratha to proper English crumpets, from French Gibassier to Chinese custard buns.

Classes began with measuring different combinations of flour, water, salt, and yeast. We watched ingredients form dough in the mixers (very satisfying), added flavorful mix-ins (when the recipe calls for garlic, always add a little more), and shaped dough into rolls and loaves of all sizes. We ooh-ed and ahh-ed over great-looking dough, hung out in front of ovens to watch the magic of oven spring, and along the way we (or at least I!) learned some life lessons, like: when your right arm is in a cast because you decided to have a clumsy life moment, you can still roll out dough like a boss. You just have to bug friends in your class to get your bread out of the oven for you later. ☺ (THANKS GUYS!)

Below are some of our delicious summer creations:

Glutenly,

Amy Copeland
Manager of Go van Gogh and Community Teaching Programs

Summing Up

August 18, 2015

Today’s post is coming to you from the beyond…

… beyond the internship, that is, as my last day as the McDermott Education Intern for Family and Access Teaching was this past Friday. While cleaning out my desk, wrapping up remaining projects, and getting those last few classes in, I had the opportunity to take stock of everything that went into the 49.5 weeks I spent at the Museum. Of course, what began as idle curiosity (I wonder how many Arturo Letters I’ve actually answered…) became a challenge to see if I could do the math on the past year. Here’s what I have:

  • 200+ Arturo Letters received without an address to respond to
  • 150+ classes co-taught
  • 50+ art projects tested
  • 31 parent handouts designed
  • 20 gallery activity sheets created
  • 12 books checked out from (and returned to) the Mayer Library
  • 10 school tours given
  • 10 blog posts written (including this one and one on the DMA Uncrated blog)
  • 7 fellow McDermott Interns befriended
  • 1 fantastic replacement intern hired (watch out for Emily come September!) and
  • 1 FAST (Family, Access, Schools and Teachers) team that made all the difference

Though each statistic helped me grow (yes, even the 9,145 Family Guides), this list doesn’t come close to conveying the impact these 346 days spent as a McDermott Intern have had on me. At every turn, someone in the Museum was there with a smile or encouraging word. I got to know the museum of my childhood in an entirely new light. I learned as much from the audiences I worked with as they (hopefully) learned from me. I made true friends and recognized a career I have a real passion for. I also got very good at unjamming printers (yes, because of the 9,145 Family Guides).

To sum up my sentiments at the end of this blog post–and the end of my internship–I figure it’s only appropriate to add one final figure to my list:

  • 1,000,000 thank you’s, best wishes, and see you soon’s –

Jennifer Sheppard
2014-2015 McDermott Intern for Family and Access Teaching

Summer Interns: How Time Flies!

August 11, 2015

I cannot believe that this summer is already coming to a close. It is true that time flies when you are having fun! I have had a great experience interning here with the DMA’s summer art camps and am extremely grateful for the opportunity.

As the summer has progressed I have come to know so many different children, each with a distinct personality and story. Realizing that I have been given the opportunity to be a part of their lives–even if only for a week or so–is such a special privilege. I can only hope that I have helped the children develop their artistic and social skills, and that when they are world famous artists they will remember Miss Anna from summer art camp.

As an artist myself, the campers have taught me a lot about accepting the fact that we are not all Michelangelo or Monet and that, even though our artwork may not be “perfect,” creating something from only our imaginations is awesome. I know that this experience will forever be in my heart, and I really have had an excellent summer working with children.

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Anna Galluzzi
Summer Art Camp Intern

Leadership, Laughter, and Legacy

August 7, 2015

Today is Nicole Stutzman Forbes’ last day at the DMA.  Nicole began her career in 1999 as an education McDermott Intern, and in 2012, became the Chair of Learning Initiatives and Dallas Museum of Art League Director of Education.  This blog post barely begins to illustrate her hard work, passion, and humor (but I’ll give it a shot anyway).

Nicole

Nicole is smart.  During her time at the DMA, Nicole worked closely with the DMA’s collections – conducting docent trainings, leading workshops for teachers, designing educational and experiential resources for exhibitions, and leading tours for visitors of all ages (among other things).  I would argue that she knows the collection better than most people on our staff.  She is also very skilled at anticipating and attending to the little details while understanding the big concept, whether she is writing a grant proposal or developing a new project.

Late Night

Leading a Late Night tour titled Tips and Toes, inspired by nail polish!

Nicole is fun.  She knows when to be serious and when to laugh.  A regular fixture at Late Nights, she could be spied animatedly chatting with visitors or chaperoning a teen dance party in the Sculpture Garden.  She knows that good work does not necessarily mean serious work.  Case in point: one of our annual education retreats was held at Bowlounge, a vintage bowling alley.  What else is there to say?

Bowlounge

Education staff revisited Bowlounge for a farewell celebration

Nicole isn’t afraid to try new things.  She welcomes opportunities to experiment with different ways of teaching with art and working with partners.  Nicole was the first to co-teach the Booker T. Washington Learning Lab at the DMA, during which visual arts students split their learning between their school and the Museum, which essentially becomes a second classroom.  She embraced technology; first through the digitization and then expansion of our resources for teachers, and later through technology-based programs in the Center for Creative Connections Tech Lab.  Rather than shy away from change, experimentation, and the unknown, Nicole eagerly explores new territory and encourages others to do so as well.

Nicole plays well with others.  Perhaps her greatest legacy is the dozens of partnerships she has initiated and developed with schools, educators, community organizations, artists, museums, and arts and cultural organizations.  Nicole strives to develop true partnerships, in which all stakeholders participate and benefit equally, building meaningful relationships that strengthen over time.  I could write an entire blog post on these partnerships alone; suffice it to say that if you named a school, museum, or community organization in the Dallas area, she has likely worked with them in one way or another.

Skyline Project

At the opening of Sculpting Space: 299 Chairs, a collaborative installation created with Skyline High School and three DISD elementary schools

Nicole is a leader.  For me, she is also a friend and mentor who championed my ideas and pushed me to think bigger. Nicole leads by her words and by her actions.  She leads with integrity.  She leads with energy and enthusiasm.  She is highly respected among her peers, both locally and nationally.

But, don’t just take my word for it.  When asked to share her thoughts about Nicole, Bonnie Pitman, former Eugene McDermott Director at the Dallas Museum of Art, quickly responded:

Nicole has always been a trailblazer, an innovator and a great educator dedicated to communicating art in new ways.  In 2002-03, she led the DMA into a new domain – educational technology.   Created in partnership with the UT Dallas’s Arts and Technology programDIG! The Maya Project was one of the first ever museum interactive video games. There was little that was easy about it— as the process for this type of creative online learning through games had never been done before.

Nicole also actively sought to bring together the works of students and educators and artists in new ways for the public to enjoy and embrace. Poets, dancers, musicians, visual, and other artists have all actively  interpreted the collections and the romps, stomps, and interactive displays have been enjoyed by all.

This past year Nicole and I co-taught a course for medical students at UT Southwestern Medical School that focused on observing, analyzing, and engaging with works of art in order to assist the future doctors with their medical diagnostic skills.  The reviews of the class were amazing in large measure because of Nicole’s passion for teaching.
Nicole and Bonnie

Nicole and Bonnie

Maria Teresa Garcia-Pedroche, Head of Community Engagement, adds:

I had the privilege of collaborating with Nicole on several exhibitions and programs. She organized col-LAB-oration (December 2003 – January 2004), an exhibition that took the form of an “idea lab” where visitors felt as if they have walked into the artist’s thought process.  She invited students from Travis Academy to collaborate with Jesús Moroles on ideas with regards to sculpture. Nicole understands that true partnerships allow for everyone to come to the table and have an equal voice. These collaborative experiences take time to create and one size does not fit all.  It is a privilege to work with a colleague who respects communities at large.

This blog post could be much, much longer.  But I think you’re starting to get the point (or you’ve already gotten it, if you’ve been fortunate enough to work with Nicole): She is awesome.  We’re so excited for her and her new adventure as the first Director of Extracurricular Programs at Trinity Valley School in Fort Worth.  But man, are we going to miss her.

Melissa Gonzales
C3 Gallery Manager

The Art of Being an Intern

August 3, 2015
Finalizing designs with the SDCC teens.

Finalizing designs with the SDCC teens.

Hello everyone! My name is Mariana Gonzalez and for the past eight weeks, I have interned with the Museum’s Education Department as part of the Mayors Intern Fellows Program. The program is highly competitive because it offers 350 students (over 1,000 students applied!) the opportunity to gain real world experience at an eight-week long internship. I am about to begin my senior year at Richland Collegiate High School. It is a charter school in Dallas where I am set to earn my Associates Degree in Science and my high school diploma this coming spring. I aspire to be a well-recognized artist someday and plan to continue my studies with a Bachelors in Studio Art.

Much of my job here as an intern for the Education Department involved getting dirty with many diverse groups of kids. I worked in the C3 Studio on some days and other days I was on the move with the Go van Gogh program! We created works of art and hosted all kinds of camps for the kiddos from fashion camp to a cosplay camp. Every day was completely different. I also had the opportunity to help guide a teacher forum. I essentially taught teachers about teaching art. From doing craft projects to visiting a few exhibitions, these teachers were offered the finest of opportunities to learn all about how we do things here at the DMA.

One of my favorite partnerships happened with the South Dallas Cultural Center. The Go van Gogh program and teens from the SDCC banded together to create temporary street art with duct tape. We began with marshmallow ice breakers, finding inspiration from artists like Banksy, and sketching out various designs. We outlined our ideas in chalk and finally worked the duct tape into the concrete to create street art. The entire experience was mind blowing –who would’ve thought we could make art on concrete out of non-expensive tape? These brilliant teens innovated my manner of thinking and that lesson will always stick with me.

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When I was little, my mother taught me about many things, but no amount of preaching on her behalf could have taught me what I learned from the kids at the DMA. Working with such a vast amount of children allowed me to realize how much I enjoy their company. They are all young, vibrant, and honest. Something I looked forward to every single day of my internship. Overall, my internship transformed my summer into a memorable experience. I am forever in debt to my supervisor and all of the wonderful people who helped guide me on this fantastic journey of learning and teaching at the DMA. I even had the opportunity to be featured on The Dallas Morning News!

Mariana Gonzalez
Mayor’s Intern Fellow

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