Educational Outreach in Museum

Client : Museum of Art and Photography, Bengaluru, India

What I Did: Learning Experience Design, Content Development, Workshop Facilitation, Team Lead

Date: 2017- 2018

I was the Education Lead for a 3-series Arts Programme at Museum of Art and Photography, Bengaluru (MAP)called ‘Journeys through Art.’ The educational outreach was designed for school students and NGO children in the age group of 12-14 year and ran in parallel to the exhibition curated from the upcoming museum MAP’s collection. The process of exhibition curation and the designing of outreach workshops went hand in hand; education was an integral component instead of being an afterthought. The first exhibition was centred on the theme of mythology, followed by political and personal.

The workshops aimed to provide students with not just a broad understanding and appreciation of Indian visual art, spanning different time periods, but also to equip them with skills that find application beyond the art world namely observation, communication, interpretation, imagination, and learning to learn. 

In the mythology workshop titled Once upon a Tale, students had the opportunity to look at different visual traditions of storytelling in Indian art as well as investigated deeper questions regarding the purpose and role of mythologies in shaping our identity. Taking inspiration from MAP’s vast collection of photographs, prints, paintings and sculptures, the young minds created their own contemporary mythology! They had super fun imagining brand new superheroes of the 21st century!

In the second workshop, The Art of Influence, students interrogated the complex relationship between art and politics and the ways in which image building strategies influence our perception of social realities. In the final series on the theme of personal ‘Self and Others’, students discovered, debated and learnt about identity and the relation of the self to the others. As an eleven-year-old from Silver Oaks School, Bengaluru said during the post-workshop feedback, ‘I did not think I could learn so much about the history, politics, and culture of India at a Museum through objects. And it was so much fun.’

Each workshop ended with a creative output that helped the students to think and express what they have seen and learnt using a guided art activity. For the mythology-themed workshop, students drew their own story complete with superheroes, magic, crisis and battles! For The Art of Influence, students drew their vision of India 2050. Finally, for Self and Others, students drew their self-portrait using a collage of paper cut outs inspired by the collection of MAP. 

Here’s what Museum of Art and Photography had to tell about the programme:

Education is central to MAP’s mission of creating a dynamic museum that builds interest, awareness and knowledge of the visual arts. It has been a pleasure to partner with Flow India who are driven by a similar understanding of the need for greater arts education and outreach in the country, and have helped design and deliver some of our education programmes. It has been really great to see young people at these programmes have fun with art and experience how interesting and exciting it can be. Flow’s work with us has helped MAP begin building students’ capacities and interest in arts and culture using the rich and diverse collection of the museum, and we look forward to a continued association with them on our journey.

-Nathaniel Gaskell, Associate Director, MAP 

You can read more about the workshops here.

The series of outreach workshops were an outcome of the joint venture between Museum of Art and Photography and Flow India. The year-long outreach programme for school children and NGOs was designed and facilitated by me during my time as the Head of Pedagogy and Learning for Flow India, Delhi.