June 18-Sept. 2
Kohl Children's Museum, 2100 Patriot Blvd., Glenview
Forget finger-painting. When it comes to art, Kohl Children's
Museum is thinking big-as in Marc Chagall big.
The museum's exhibit, Chagall for Children, returns home this
summer, and it brings with it a unique type of art education.
"It's an exhibit that really brings the work of Chagall to a
level that the children can directly interact with," says Sheridan
Turner, president and CEO of the museum. "The paintings are so
easily interpreted for our age group. All of his pictures are very
The exhibit, created by Kohl in 1996, includes 14 different
exhibit components, each attached to a particular Chagall work.
For instance, for Chagall's "America Windows," kids can help
create their own stained glass window, moving pieces on a backlit
surface. The painting "The Circus" inspires role play: kids don
capes and pretend to be part of a circus, and the image is shown on
a TV screen. And in conjunction with "The Blue House," kids build a
structure with Lincoln Logs.
Plus there are opportunities to arrange flowers, create a
tapestry, animate a painting, and explore symmetry.
While kids might think they're just doing creative projects,
Turner points out that each component incorporates other areas of
learning, including math and science.
"There's a lot of STEM learning going on in this exhibit,
although you might not think it," she says. "It shows a beautiful
marriage of STEM and art and why the arts are so important in STEM
Turner says the exhibit comes at the perfect time, since outdoor
activities, including chalk drawing, are planned. On June 19, Lambs
Farm will bring by some sheep, temporarily colored with Kool-Aid,
an image frequently seen in Chagall's work.
Chagall for Children has traveled to museums throughout North
America, but Turner says children and parents are always eager to
see it return.
"The overall goal," Turner says, "is to get children exposed and
to develop an appreciation for the arts."
Elizabeth Diffin is the senior editor at Chicago Parent. She lives in Wheaton.
See more of Elizabeth's stories here.
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