Trecked over the hill to visit LACMA today. They have a free program called NextGen that lets a child and parent in for free until they’re 18. Today P is enjoying our visits. When she’s 18 I hope she will as well because I’ll be dragging her booty to go see all the exhibits for free as long as I can!
One of the first TV programs P use to watch was an HBO series called “Classical Baby: Music, Art and Dance for the Smart Baby”. The show animates works of art to classical or jazz music. P became familiar with the work of Jackson Pollack, Fernand Leger, Joan Miro and Monet for example.
When P was around one we visited LACMA about twice a month. She would see a painting by any of the familiar artists and call it by the title it had in the show. A piece by Pollack was called “Busy Bees” and Fernand Leger’s was called “Trucks” so that’s what she would call their work. It was amazing. Today she didn’t recognize anyone’s work. It was a different visit. I had to let her run around in the grassy areas and then go inside to look at art. It’s as if her brain has to settle down with some physical activity so she can focus a little more.
LACMA has been under renovation. The Children’s Museum is open again. It’s been nominated one of the Top 10 Art Museums in the country for great child activities. P got to paint with Chinese brushes and great paints on great paper. She was sooo shy with everyone(not normal for her) and then she painted a little. She was very excited about picking her piece back up at the end though.
Today we saw a part of the property I’ve never seen before. There is an outdoor reflecting pool with Calder mobiles and other works that is very beautiful. I did get P to recognize a Calder mobile and when I ask her who made it she says “Senor Calder”.
Coming here makes me feel good as a parent. This is the kind of experience I think is very important for P. She sees art. That in itself is an education. Without any explanation, from me or anyone, I feel these works stimulate her brain.
Another aspect of the visit is what is expected of her. The environment demands a certain behavior. She must be quiet and hold my hand. She can only look and not touch. And she must be patient. It’s not just me asking this of her, its everyone. I think because we’ve been here often and when she was so young she conforms. It can be tough at times on both of us, but she pulls it off. When we’re done I take her to a park where the expectation is the exact opposite and she fully gets that there is a time and place for everything.
I also love museums because of the pictures you can take. The lighting is beautiful and the backdrops are creative and different. Like this wall or the 4th floor window with a great view of Mid-Wilshire.