Adventures with Inspiration
We recently visited the Crocker Art Museum in Sacramento, California. Tucked under wide branching trees, this museum features an old wing that once was the party and exhibition space for the Crocker family. Beside it, connected via hallways, is the new wing that showcases traveling exhibitions, classical art, and modern artwork. The old wing showcases stunning architecture and tiling alongside lovely collections of pottery and paintings.
I have been to the Crocker numerous times with my kids as they go through school. Each docent shares new stories and fascinating anecdotes. It's always a joy to wander among the art.
This trip, the mosque by Al Farrow was a big conversation-starter for the students. They, at first, noticed the beautiful colors and lines. Then, walking around the piece to where the scrupture shows a demolished section of building, the students notice that all is not as it seems. Then one would say, "it's bullets. Wait, there's guns. It's made of guns and bullets." Which brought explorations of, "Why an artist would build a beautiful sculpture with destructive materials like guns?" What did the sculpture say to them?
And even though they're young, and not super aware of political tensions, or religious freedoms, or historical context, they could find lessons in how communities are affected by war, and taking care of one another, and how danger feels, and how beauty may have deeper meanings.
Art makes kids think. And it's inspiring to share it, every time.