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When Little Girls Become Junior Connoisseurs: A Cautionary Tale of Art Museum Education in the Hyperreal

When Little Girls Become Junior Connoisseurs: A Cautionary Tale of Art Museum Education in the... MELINDA M. Introducing the Tale A young girl about eleven years old appeared on the TV screen. She stood in an art museum expounding upon the painting hanging behind her. She talked about the artist and what the image portrayed. With an air of elitist prissiness that suited the museum environment, the girl delivered her presentation to a group of schoolmates. As I and the other art museum educators assembled in the conference room where the video was shown learned, the girl had participated in a program at a prominent art museum in which students from her school came to the museum many times during the school year. This repeat-visit program culminated with these youngsters demonstrating what they learned about art by giving a talk on a single artwork to friends, family, or other classmates. The girl's recitation of art historically correct information was impressive. She sounded just like a junior art historian. Yet, something was missing. The little girl appeared to copy the style of art historical talk more than its content. I turned to the colleague sitting next to me and wondered, "Did that girl learn how to make meaning or how to talk like a http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png The Journal of Aesthetic Education University of Illinois Press

When Little Girls Become Junior Connoisseurs: A Cautionary Tale of Art Museum Education in the Hyperreal

The Journal of Aesthetic Education , Volume 40 (3) – Aug 7, 2006

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Publisher
University of Illinois Press
Copyright
Copyright © 2006 Board of Trustees of the University of Illinois.
ISSN
1543-7809
Publisher site
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Abstract

MELINDA M. Introducing the Tale A young girl about eleven years old appeared on the TV screen. She stood in an art museum expounding upon the painting hanging behind her. She talked about the artist and what the image portrayed. With an air of elitist prissiness that suited the museum environment, the girl delivered her presentation to a group of schoolmates. As I and the other art museum educators assembled in the conference room where the video was shown learned, the girl had participated in a program at a prominent art museum in which students from her school came to the museum many times during the school year. This repeat-visit program culminated with these youngsters demonstrating what they learned about art by giving a talk on a single artwork to friends, family, or other classmates. The girl's recitation of art historically correct information was impressive. She sounded just like a junior art historian. Yet, something was missing. The little girl appeared to copy the style of art historical talk more than its content. I turned to the colleague sitting next to me and wondered, "Did that girl learn how to make meaning or how to talk like a

Journal

The Journal of Aesthetic EducationUniversity of Illinois Press

Published: Aug 7, 2006

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