Monday, June 27, 2011

Sometimes We Just Need To Stop

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I picked up this book at the Museum of Fine Arts about a year ago supposedly for my son but I actually find myself putting it in my bag and taking it with me here and there. It contains pages of interactive prompts that involve observing, collecting, documenting, analyzing, and comparing things you find in the world.   If you're feeling an urge to drift away from your quotidian path,  this might prove an interesting journey.  It has about 60 or so "explorations" you could do in any given order or time.  One of my favorite quotes in it is by John Cage. 

(The residual purpose  of art is) Purposeless Play.  This play, however, is an affirmation of life- not an attempt to bring order out of chaos nor to suggest improvements in creation, but simply a way of waking up to the very life we're livng, which is so excellent once one gets one's mind and one's desires out of its way and lets it act of its own accord. 
(I find PK, Kinder and First do this beautifully and effortlessly)

Exploration Examples:

Exloration #24- Combinations.
 Combine groups of objects for visual or emotional contrast...  natural vs. human -made, alive vs. decaying or contrasing colors.

Exploratin #50- Found Smells
Go for a walk.  Make a list of all the smells in your neighborhood.  Be as detailed as possible.  Attempt to identify  sources.


  1. I tried this with my son and he came back with a very interesting collection of things. So far he has a bird nest, an old rusty lock, and a dead moth. We realized we needed to add another category...alive, decaying and dead. This was great because instead of being bored he went out on an "expedition" that was fun.

  2. Hi, Gabriela: How would you like to write some articles for SchoolArts Magazine? I like your ideas!

  3. Wow, what an honor that you stumble upon my blog. Thanks for your kind comment. I would certainly enjoy writing an article for the School Arts magazine.