Archive for the 'Programs' Category

Toddler Tuesday’s: An Art Teacher’s Treat

Toddler Tuesdays
Annette Wanick shares a story during Toddler Tuesdays.

Teaching the Gibbes Museum of Art’s Toddler Tuesdays—held weekly at the Charleston Library Society—has become one of my favorite things to do. The class combines story time and art activities for children ages 18-months to five years accompanied by an adult. My partner-in-crime, Carole Anne Rissmiller, and I love reading the books and planning the lessons. (We also use Toddler Tuesdays as an excuse to have lunch at different restaurants and explore Charleston with our cameras!)

All art lessons for the toddlers are discipline based. Each week we use a fascinating early-learning level book to help the children explore the world of art. Last week, we read “Squarehead” by Harriet Ziefert. Through question and answer, we discovered that there are many different kinds of shapes and colors in our clothes, on the windows and doors, and all around us. Learning and recognizing shapes is a fundamental tool when learning to read. Focusing on what they learned in “Squarehead,” the children and their adult partners created personalized books featuring specific shapes and colors. Extra pages were included to allow them to continue working on their books at home.

As a retired elementary art teacher, this class allows me the opportunity to continue to share the world of art with children. I hope to have more children and parents join us this year.

Sandy Young, Women’s Council Volunteer and Guest Blogger, Gibbes Museum of Art

Toddler Tuesdays
Free and exclusive for Gibbes Museum and Charleston Library Society Members
Every Tuesday at the Charleston Library Society, 164 King St
10:15–11:00am in the Children’s Room; No reservations required
Led by Gibbes Women’s Council members Annette Wanick and Sandy Young
Questions? Call Rebecca Sailor at 843.722.2706 x41 or email

Museum Mile Weekend: September 25 and 26

Museum Mile Weekend Logo

On September 25 and 26, 2010, the Gibbes will be partnering with other cultural institutions along and around Meeting Street to offer locals and tourists a single entry pass during the second annual Museum Mile Weekend. Charleston’s Museum Mile operates year-round with signage, brochures, and a website to help visitors navigate Charleston’s cultural corridor. However, on this one special weekend, we band together to offer one admission price.

The concept of Charleston’s Museum Mile was hatched several years ago by Dr. John Brumgardt, executive director of the Charleston Museum. The downtown cultural attractions had partnered on programs in the past but had not done much in the way of cooperative marketing and signage. The idea for the Charleston Museum Mile emerged as Dr. Brumgardt and representatives from other cultural institutions opened up a map of the Meeting Street area and plotted the many museums and historic sites that would be of interest to tourists and easy to navigate around. While the concept of a “Museum Mile” was not new and has proven a success in other cities, such as New York and London, the unique alliance formed by the cultural institutions and the inclusion of religious sites and parks put Charleston’s Museum Mile in a category of its own. By 2008, the grass-roots campaign to promote the Mile was in full swing largely in part to the dedication and collaborated vision of the participating organizations and institutions.

For one $20 pass (and only $10 for children 12 and under), passholders can visit thirteen cultural sites throughout the weekend.  If purchased separately, adult admission for these sites would be over $100! Sites participating in the upcoming Museum Mile Weekend are:

Many of the cultural institutions will also offer special programs during Museum Mile Weekend. The Gibbes will offer free docent-led tour at 2:30 on both Saturday and Sunday.

Passes for Museum Mile Weekend can be purchased at or at any Charleston Visitor Center location. Online purchasers will receive their passes in the mail so be sure and order your passes early. We hope you’ll take advantage of this terrific opportunity to sample Charleston’s cultural riches for this not-so-rich price!

Marla Loftus, Director of Museum Relations, Gibbes Museum of Art

Back to School Tools at the Gibbes

Students on a guided tour discuss the painting "April," by Childe Hassam.
Students on a guided tour discuss the painting April, by Childe Hassam.

School Year 2010–2011 is here! Most teachers and students return to their classrooms the week of August 16th for another year of enlightenment. The Gibbes Museum is excited, as always, to be a part of this learning process. There are many different ways schools can utilize the Gibbes’ resources to enhance their curriculum. My role, as Associate Curator of Education, is to plan programs that help our audience enjoy the museum and learn about art history. Let me share some insider tips on how to make the most of the Gibbes.

On, we provide a wealth of information in our Learn section. First, look over our tour information. We have guided tours for preschool through 12th grade classes that are aligned with the S.C. Learning Standards. And, there is always the option for a teacher to lead their own self-guided tour. We also bring art into the schools with the Gibbes Art to Go program. Through Gibbes Art to Go, any school or organization can submit a request for a teaching artist to lead a hands-on project in their school. Proposal forms can be downloaded online.

Teachers have their very own area on our website—Just for Educators—where they can build their own gallery of images using our collection and download our Educator’s Guide. We provide a bound copy of the guide to every teacher that brings their class for a tour, and it can also be mailed out or picked up at the museum. The Educator’s Guide is a great way for teachers to explore our collection before, after, or in place of a visit.  Of course we hope it will not be in place of a visit, but we know not every teacher will be able to visit the Gibbes this school year. Contact me at to request a guide. In addition to teaching tools, information about the Mary Whyte Art Educator Award is also available in Just for Educators. The annual award recognizes a high school art teacher in the tri-county Charleston area who has demonstrated superior commitment to their students and to their craft. I encourage you to nominate yourself or a deserving art educator today!

One of the final stops on the website under Learn is the Gibbes Interactions features. Select a signature work of art from the Gibbes collection, and enjoy an in-depth exploration of the artists, subjects, and styles that have shaped the art of Charleston and the south. You can display Interactions on your Smart Board and have fun!

Remember, we are your visual arts museum. Come for a visit whether it is in-person or virtually. Welcome Back to School!

Rebecca Sailor, Associate Curator of Education, Gibbes Museum of Art

Above: Photo by Scott Henderson

Sharing a Love of Art History with the Next Generation

Katie Gephart, summer intern, working with camper Parker Weeks.

Katie Gephart, summer intern, with camper Parker Weeks.

My name is Katie Gephart, and this summer I interned in the museum’s Education and Outreach department. In the fall, I’ll start my senior year at Washington and Lee University where I am majoring in art history and museum studies. My university professors continue to encourage my love of art history, and now—through my internship—I’ve had the opportunity to teach other students about art. My primary responsibility was assisting with the Summer Art Camp. Over the summer, I worked with elementary school students to expand the scope of their art awareness by exposing them to new media, techniques, and sources of inspiration within the Gibbes Museum. The summer camp themes included In the Forest, Go Global, and ArtStory, and each week we created special projects that both reflected these themes and introduced the campers to important artists and artistic traditions. Sharing art history with the children and helping them translate the concepts and ideas into their own work was immeasurably rewarding.

<em>April (The Green Gown)</em>, 1920, By Childe Hassam (American, 1859 – 1935). Oil on canvas; 56 x 82 1/4 in. Gibbes Museum of Art, Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Archer Huntington (1936.09.01).

April (The Green Gown), 1920, By Childe Hassam (American, 1859 – 1935). Oil on canvas; 56 x 82 1/4 in. Gibbes Museum of Art, Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Archer Huntington (1936.09.01).

Once a week, the campers went into the galleries to explore the museum’s collection and incorporated what they saw into their art projects. Last week, ArtStory focused on an artist’s ability to tell stories without words, using only form, line, and color. We looked at the large oil painting, April: (The Green Gown) by Childe Hassam—one of my favorite paintings in the collection—and asked how the woman’s story might be different if she wore a red gown instead. The group really seemed to connect to this idea and shared how different colors make them feel. Watching the kids process this important principle of art theory and apply it to their own art work was so exciting for me to observe. The Gibbes offers its campers such a special opportunity by sharing the collection, and I’ve been so grateful to share my knowledge of art with the kids and see how their techniques improve and enthusiasm for art grows.

Katie Gephardt, summer intern, Education and Outreach Department, Gibbes Museum of Art

Sally Collins, art educator, works with campers to create their own works of art.

Sally Collins, art educator, works with campers to create their own works of art.

Learn more about public programs, classes, and camp at the Gibbes Museum of Art.

Charleston Day Junior Docent Program

Charleston Day School and the Gibbes Museum of Art partnered during the 2009-2010 school year to create a Junior Docent Program under the direction of Middle School Head Andy Willits. Twenty 8th grade students toured the Gibbes exhibition The Charleston Story with Museum Educators Elise Detterbeck and Pat Burgess. Each student then chose one art object that they studied and later presented to 5th, 6th, and 7th grade students. On May 12th, the 8th graders presented the tour to their parents, followed by a reception to help recognize their hard work.

Louise Marks

Louise Marks


Fleetwood Brown

Fleetwood Brown


Aimee McShane

Aimee McShane


Steven Craig and Will Nicklas

Steven Craig and Will Nicklas


Addison Ingle takes questions

Addison Ingle takes questions


2009-2010 Junior Docents

2009-2010 Junior Docents


Photographs courtesy of Carolina Photosmith.

Opera Performance on March 7

Join us on Sunday, March 7 at 3pm for the Charleston Chamber Opera’s presentation of Whistler’s Women – Songs on a Life Well Traveled. The beautiful Gibbes rotunda will be the setting for Soprano Patrice Tiedemann, Mezzo Soprano Lara Wilson, and Baritone Paul Soper as they explore the life and loves of James Whistler with a clever mix of art song, opera, and theatrical flair. Enjoy gorgeous melodies from Debussy, Saint-Saens, Mahler, Gilbert & Sullivan, and others, as the singers portray Whistler and his women in song and verse. The hour-long program is interwoven with narration by actress Terry Bell-Aby, with piano accompaniment by musical director Steven Morris. 

Tickets at $10 for members, $20 for non-members, and advance ticket purchase is strongly recommended.  Sorry folks, this event has sold out!


Behind the Scenes Education Program

Ashley Hall students in Jane Pelland’s 7th grade classes enjoyed two days of the Gibbes Behind the Scenes program during their Winterim. Zinnia Willits, Collections Manager, and Greg Jenkins, Facilities Manager, led the program. The students enjoyed learning about the care of art work, exhibition installation, and the various duties of the museum’s curatorial staff. 

Interested in booking this program for your group? Contact Rebecca Williams at (843) 722-2706, ext. 41.

zinnia class 002

South of Broad Walking Tour

Calling all Pat Conroy fans! The characters and Charleston vistas featured in Pat Conroy’s #1 New York Times best selling novel South of Broad come to life in a new walking tour produced by Old Charleston Walking Tours. The South of Broad Walking Tour is a two-hour tour narrated by professional guides, highlighting the streets and sites featured in Conroy’s 2009 hit novel, South of Broad

The tour, available Tuesday through Saturday, begins at 11:00 am in the lobby of the Mills House Hotel at 115 Meeting Street and ends outside the Gibbes Museum of Art. The ticket price of $25 per person includes the walking tour, admission to the Gibbes, and a cocktail or dessert at Pat Conroy’s favorite Charleston restaurant, the aptly named Slightly North of Broad. Walking tour reservations are required in advance by calling (843) 568-0473 or online at

Tour guide Denny Stiles leading the South of Broad Walking tour

Tour guide Denny Stiles leading the South of Broad Walking tour

Gibbes staff members in Washington Park during the walking tour

Gibbes staff members in Washington Park during the walking tour

A stop on Legare Street during the walking tour

A stop on Legare Street during the tour

Christo Tickets Now on Sale

Join the Gibbes on April 13, 2010 for a memorable evening with the world-renowned artist Christo. For over forty years, Christo and Jeanne-Claude have collaborated on large-scale art projects using fabric in both urban and rural environments. The evening will begin with a presentation focusing on the artists’ previous and upcoming works of art, followed by an open question and answer session and book signing. Don’t miss this opportunity—click here to purchase tickets.


CHRISTO – A Presentation and Dialogue

Tuesday, April 13, 2010 at 5:30pm

Memminger Auditorium, 56 Beaufain Street

$25 members, $35 non-members, $15 student section (limited availability)


Christo and Jeanne-Claude: Surrounded Islands, Biscayne Bay, Greater Miami, Florida, 1980-83   © Christo 1983

Christo and Jeanne-Claude: Surrounded Islands, Biscayne Bay, Greater Miami, Florida, 1980-83 © Christo 1983


Christo: The Gates, Central Park, New York City, 1996, Collage in two parts, pencil, fabric, pastel, charcoal, wax crayon, and aerial photograph, © Christo 1996

Christo: The Gates, Central Park, New York City, 1996, Collage in two parts, pencil, fabric, pastel, charcoal, wax crayon, and aerial photograph, © Christo 1996

Cell Phone Audio Tour

Laura Reece listening to the audio tour

Laura Reece listening to the audio tour

Did you know the Gibbes offers a cell phone audio tour? And the best part is that it’s free! The audio tour allows you to access in-depth information about the museum collection and selected objects on view from your personal cell phone. This format offers the flexibility to explore the museum at your own pace and hear directly from artists, the museum director, and even Mayor Joe Riley. Who knew your cell phone could be so educational?

Harold Hintz and Phyllis Black enjoying the audio tour

Harold Hintz and Phyllis Black enjoying the audio tour

Laura Reece learning about Jill Hooper's painting

Laura Reece learning about Jill Hooper's painting

The cell phone audio tour is made possible by the generous support of Dr. and Mrs. Anton Vreede.

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