Archive for the 'Classes' Category

What I Did this Summer—Becca Goes to Camp

I’ve been volunteering with curator Sara Arnold for a couple of years, and I’ve been able to work on a variety of interesting projects. I have helped document the Alfred Hutty print inventory, update catalogue records for publication on the museum’s website, research French miniature painters in America for the In Search of Julien Hudson exhibit, write information sheets for docent training, along with many other tasks around the curatorial department. When Sara asked if I would be interested in working with the summer art camp, I readily agreed and looked forward to seeing kids express their creativity and learn more about the fabulous collection at the Gibbes. The campers certainly didn’t disappoint.

Campers create artist palettes.   Creating a miniature portrait.

Above: Campers created artist palettes and miniature portraits.

The first session was all about portraiture, and my favorite project was creating miniature “paintings.” While visiting the galleries, the campers were amazed to see the miniature portrait collection, and were even more surprised to learn that artists used single-hair brushes to complete such small masterpieces. We used Shrinky Dinks paper and markers (a much easier tool!) to draw small portraits, and after they “cooked” they were tiny! The second session focused on Charleston artists, and we were fortunate to have local painter Tate Nation visit our class and talk about his inspiration and process.

Tate Nation visits with campers.
Above: Tate Nation visited with campers.

The last session covered the unique features of Charleston architecture, and each camper created a maquette of a Charleston single house, complete with piazzas (or porches) and a landscaped garden. Even during these hectic mornings—gluing shingles, cutting out windows, and designing yards—I could not help but think about how this magical city has intrigued artists for years, and how fortunate it is that we have preserved our history for future generations to enjoy. I was reminded of my time looking at Alfred Hutty’s Charleston prints—I could recognize the scenes he depicted because many of those buildings and gates are still here.

Adding a red metal roof.   Designing a Charleston Single House.

Above: Campers designed Charleston Single Houses.

Becca Hiester, Volunteer, Gibbes Museum of Art

Experience a Summer of Fun with the Gibbes!

Summer is here and we are excited to welcome back many familiar faces to the Gibbes Summer Art Camp, including our teacher Sally Collins. A long-time Gibbes teaching artist, this is Sally’s second year teaching summer camp. She does an outstanding job with the children, combining hands-on projects with art history. Each week-long session focuses on a theme and this year we will look at “Portraits,” “Charleston Artists Past and Present,” and “Charleston Architecture.” Children will end each week with a mini exhibit of their work for their parents to enjoy. I recently spoke with several parents whose children have enjoyed camp in previous years and wanted to share their comments, as well as some great images of campers having fun.

My son Gray has attended the Gibbes art camp for the last three years. I continue to be thrilled and amazed by the superior art instruction he receives and the quality work that is created. Each year he has produced a beautiful portfolio of work that reflects the skills he gained in painting, drawing and print-making in just one week. The Gibbes art camp provides a lively learning environment that inspires creativity and instills a true love of process. Student access to original works of art within the museum is an added bonus. My son returned from camp each day talking about a different artist or painting from the Gibbes collection and the particular techniques employed. Not confined to the classroom, the camp also offers the opportunity to create art against Charleston’s historic backdrop. My son has always been interested in art; this camp provides a wonderful opportunity for him to measurably improve his abilities. —Zinnia Willits


Our daughter Adriana has enjoyed tremendously the Gibbes Summer Art Camps. She attended all of the sessions last summer and brought back home a diverse portfolio of artwork. As a parent and an educator, I appreciated the quality of the work my child was exposed to and was grateful for the enthusiasm of the instructors. Each day, I looked forward to the new projects Adriana brought home and I know she was proud to share them with us. —Anna Ballinger

I hope to see you this summer. If you are interested in getting more information or registering your child please call or email me at 843-722-2706 ext. 41 or rsailor@gibbesmuseum.org or you can download our registration form on our website.

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

Montessori Day School Makes Monthly Visits to the Gibbes

Elise Detterbeck and students

The Montessori Day School is taking advantage of our guided school tours in a unique way. This group of students, ages six to twelve years old, is working with Museum Educator Elise Detterbeck in the galleries once a month during the school year. Rebecca Sailor, Associate Curator of Education, has had the opportunity to observe the students as they interact with and learn from Elise. After the school’s most recent visit, Rebecca talked with Elise about the curriculum. Their conversation is below.

Rebecca Sailor: There are so many approaches when working with kids in the galleries. What have you focused on with the Montessori School group?
Elise Detterbeck: I have chosen to organize the visits by looking at different genres of painting each visit. During their first visit, in October, we explored portraits (both miniature and full size), and talked about traditional versus modern (pose, attributes, props) and how they reflect the culture of the time in which they are painted. The Face Lift exhibition provided a great resource for exploring this theme.

In November, we focused on landscapes, once again starting with traditional and ending with modern. This time we talked about composition (background, foreground, midground and the horizon line), texture, point of view (bird’s eye, worm’s eye, Dutch angle, straight-on), as well as style (realistic, impressionistic, abstract), and subject matter.

This last visit, we talked about genre pictures (pictures that tell a story). This style of painting allowed us to revisit and review what we had discussed in visits one and two, since many genre scenes have the same elements as portraits and landscapes. In addition to the discussion, I gave the children a writing project based on one of our paintings.

As for the last three visits, I am discussing plans with the teachers. These children are extremely bright, really enthusiastic, and full of energy. What a joy! I’m thinking we should do some kind of hands-on activity with them to really cement what we’ve learned. One idea is to have them create an activity book starting with December’s writing activity, which they can add to each visit. I do want to encourage them to experiment with their own styles of drawing. They draw outside while waiting to come into the museum, so I think they would enjoy it.
Elise Detterbeck and students

Rebecca Sailor: What do you hope to accomplish with this class?
Elise Detterbeck: This is a wonderful opportunity to introduce students to the art of looking. My first question is always “What do you see?” These kids are so into it that they don’t even wait for me to ask the question anymore. My ultimate goal is to teach them how to look at a work of art and be able to understand it on multiple levels. For example, what is the creator trying to express, and how does the work reflect the artist and his or her view of the world? I also want the students to explore the possibilities of what the piece means to themselves, and how it relates to their own world view.

Rebecca Sailor: What do you feel are the benefits of monthly visits?
Elise Detterbeck: I worked in Chicago at the Terra Museum and we had some schools that came three times in a school year, but every month is even better. Multiple visits, with a small group like this, are so good because you can lay the foundation and then build on it, thus adding more and more each time you see them. And the joy of this Montessori group is that they remember so much between visits.

Rebecca Sailor: As their leader, what do you envision being your favorite part?
Elise Detterbeck: My favorite part is definitely the “ah-ha!” moment, when they use the looking strategies to figure out a work of art. They see things I’ve never seen, even after working with a piece so many times.

Rebecca Sailor: Is there anything else you want to say about your experience with the Montessori School?
Elise Detterbeck: I think my challenge is going to be to make each visit unique in its own way, and valuable to each student. That is why I want them to create something themselves, which will personalize the experience for every individual.

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

Toddler Tuesdays: A Parent’s Perspective

Toddler Tuesdays
Danielle Zorn (center) and her daughter, Kylie, paint fall leaves during Toddler Tuesdays.

If you come to my house on a typical morning you will probably find me asking my two year old daughter Kylie at least four to five times to please put on her shoes so we can get our day started. Not on Toddler Tuesday. All I have to do on Tuesday is casually mention that it’s time to head to the Charleston Library Society and shoes are on and she is out the door before I have time to blink! She loves the Gibbes Museum of Art’s Toddler Tuesdays and so do I!

Once we arrive at the Library Society both kids and adults settle in on giant bean bags and sit back and listen while we are taken on an exciting literary journey that help the kids explore the world of art as well as the world that surrounds them. They are often asked questions during the stories that help them explore and understand the morals and lessons of the books. Once the stories are read, the kids move on to their art projects. From painting to collage, pencil drawing to t-shirt dying, the art projects are varied and exciting. Whether taught by Annette Wanick or Sandy Young, the kids learn about basic art concepts such as color mixing, shape recognition, the use of texture and layering, and much more. Both Annette and Sandy are wonderful art educators that relate to and encourage creativity from their students. With such caring and knowledgeable teachers, it is no wonder that each week we come home with a new masterpiece to add to our collection as well as wonderful memories that will be remembered for a longtime to come.

I think that Kylie sums up her experiences here best when she leaves on Tuesdays saying, “that was really fun, mommy. I like coming here.” I agree.

Danielle Zorn, Member and Guest Blogger, The 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 rsailor@gibbesmuseum.org

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 rsailor@gibbesmuseum.org

On the Street with Summer Intern Laura Kovalsky

Laura Kovalsky, Gibbes Museum summer intern, en route to distribute museum rack cards.

Laura Kovalsky, Gibbes Museum summer intern, en route to distribute museum rack cards.

My name is Laura Kovalsky, and I am a summer communications intern at the Gibbes Museum of Art. I am a rising senior at the University of Alabama, but I’m enjoying living and working in Charleston for the summer. At the Gibbes—aside from my daily responsibilities of organizing press clippings, updating information for the communications department, and attending meetings—one of the most unique things that I have been able to do is a form of grassroots marketing. The museum distributes rack cards, which are flyers describing the year’s exhibitions, to local art galleries for them to display to promote current and upcoming exhibitions. For the Gibbes, rack cards are an important communication tool because they are an easily accessible way for visitors to get information about the museum.

While walking around town to different galleries, I had the opportunity to meet and talk with gallery owners and view a wide variety of artwork. I learned about the art community in Charleston and the connection many artists feel to the beautiful landscape and the people of this city. Because I am new to the Charleston area, I enjoyed finding some of the more hidden galleries and going to places that I probably would not have known about otherwise. It was a unique way to tour the city through its art. During this process of spreading the word about the Gibbes, I was actually able to learn about local artists and the city.

Download the Gibbes College Internship application (PDF).

Petite Protocol

Last week the ladies from Southern Protocol taught etiquette to 4-7 year old children in the museum’s Welcome Gallery. The children learned how to set the table, politely get someone’s attention, use please and thank you, and many other lessons. To celebrate their accomplishments, the class held a reception and certificate presentation ceremony on Friday afternoon. Petite Protocol continues this week with a session for 8-12 year old children.

Petite Protocol Week 1 008

Petite Protocol Week 1 007

Petite Protocol Week 1 009

Eli Barker receiving his certificate from Mrs. Lizz

Eli Barker receiving his certificate from Mrs. Lizz

Petite Protocol—A Few Spots Remain

This summer the Gibbes is teaming up with Southern Protocol to offer etiquette lessons for children ages 4-7 and 8-12. The modern manners experts at Southern Protocol will teach children all the basics of proper etiquette including introductions, thank you notes, phone manners, table manners, museum etiquette, and other important lessons. Classes will be held in the museum’s Welcome Gallery and students can bring a bagged lunch to enjoy in the Gibbes Courtyard.

Petite Protocol

June 21-25, Ages 4-7

June 28-July 2, Ages 8-12

12-2pm

$60 per week

For more information or to register, please contact Rebecca Sailor at (843) 722-2706, ext. 41.

A Few Spots Remain for Summer Art Camp

Camper Kimberly McCurdy

Camper Kimberly McCurdy

Join the Gibbes Museum of Art for a great summer of creative fun at our 2010 Summer Art Camp. Work with practicing artists and museum teachers, explore the museum’s galleries for inspiration, and create your own fantastic artwork! This summer, artists can choose from three themes: In the Forest, Go Global, and Art Story. Classes will be held across from the museum at the Circular Congregational Church. Campers will meet at the Gibbes each morning.

Teachers are Mrs. Sally Collins and Mrs. Martha Criscuolo. Mrs. Collins holds a Commercial Art Degree, Bachelor of Social Science Degree, and Master in Teaching (MIT) Degree. She has previously taught Art, English, and 4th grade at the First Baptist School in Mt. Pleasant as well as 1st and 3rd grade at Midland Park Elementary in Charleston County. Most recently, Mrs. Collins teaches Art at Trident Academy in Mt. Pleasant. Mrs. Criscuolo holds a Bachelor of Arts Degree and has completed graduate work toward a Masters in Art Education. She was an Art teacher in New Haven, CT and currently serves as a Gibbes Museum of Art Museum Educator and Teaching Artist. We are happy to have these wonderful teachers lead our summer camp!

Summer Art Camp for Children Ages 4 – 7 and 8 – 12
June 7 – July 23, 9am – 12noon
$175/wk for museum members, $200/wk for non-members

To register contact Rebecca Sailor at (843) 722-2706, ext. 41

Budding artist Gray Willits

Budding artist Gray Willits

Painting the Masters, Part II

To celebrate a successful Painting the Masters class, students held an art show on October 27th to share their work with family and friends.  Organized by teacher Janet Hopkins, the event included refreshments and big smiles from all of the proud artists! 

Selie Feldman and her father

Selie Feldman and her father

Cameron King and her parents

Cameron King and her parents

Julia Wall and her beautiful paintings

Julia Wall and her beautiful paintings

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