Posts Tagged 'All the World’s a Stage'

November Programs for Teachers

We are gearing up for two exciting programs for teachers this month:

Our first program will be on Saturday, November 7 at 9:00 a.m.  My colleague Logan Acton and I will be leading a teacher workshop on our special exhibitions that take a fresh look at the Museum’s collections through the theme of performance: All the World’s a Stage and Performance/Art.  This workshop starts before the Museum opens to the public, giving teachers the opportunity to explore these exhibitions before other visitors arrive.  Complete details, including registration, can be found on the Web site.

Portrait of Isabelle Lemonnier, Edouard Manet, c. 1879, Dallas Museum of Art

Portrait of Isabelle Lemonnier, Edouard Manet, c. 1879, Dallas Museum of Art

For our Thursday Evening Program for Teachers this month, we will be joining the public lecture Manet, Models, Portraits, and “La Vie Moderne,” given by Dr. Nancy Locke, Associate Professor of Art History, Penn State University, on November 12 at 7:00 p.m.  Admission to this lecture is free for teachers, upon presentation of faculty ID.  Advance registration is not required and seating is limited.  Teachers are welcome to arrive early and join education staff in the “Teachers Lounge” in the Atrium Café.

Information about these and other upcoming programs for teachers can be found at  We hope to welcome you to the Museum soon for one of these programs!

Molly Kysar
Head of Teaching Programs

Lights, Camera, Action!

Dancers of Tlaxcala (Danzantes de Tlaxcala), Carlos Mérida, 1951

Dancers of Tlaxcala (Danzantes de Tlaxcala), Carlos Mérida, 1951

It’s an exciting time in the Arts District with the grand opening of the AT&T Performing Arts Center.  In honor of our new neighbor, we’ve developed a new Go van Gogh school outreach program called Creative Connections: Lights, Camera, Action! that focuses on three diverse works of art in the Museum collection and invites students to respond creatively through movement and drama.  Creative Connections programs are 90-minutes long, during which students participate in what we call “experiments” that involve collaborating with others, applying multiple approaches to solving problems, and producing a creative expression.  These programs can be messy, loud, and challenging – and they are definitely a lot of fun.

If you’re a 3-6th grade teacher and don’t mind a little bit of noise in the classroom, I hope you’ll consider this program for your students.   I promise you’ll be amazed and impressed by the creativity, thought, and enthusiasm they put into their performances.  Requesting a program is easy with our online form

With a background in art history and a bit of studio art, the task of writing a program about performance intimidated me.  However, I have the great fortune of working with talented people, and I interviewed some of them during my initial research.  I spoke with Lanita Sene, who I know through our partnership with the South Dallas Cultural Center.  Lanita leads African dance and culture classes during Summer Arts at the Center.  I also spoke with Blanca Reyna and Calvin Rollins, who I met through our partnership with the Ice House Cultural Center summer camp.   Blanca specializes in Aztec culture, and Calvin is a dance student at Southern Methodist University (he also attended Booker T. Washington High School for the Performing  and Visual Arts).  Last, I spoke with my colleague Amy Copeland who studied dance at Booker T. Washington and other studios in the Dallas area. 

This talented group provided many helpful ideas, like warm-up exercises that capture the students’ attention and focus.  Another great suggestion was empowering students by giving them specialized roles in their performances and encouraging them to lead peer critiques. 

I tested the program with 4th graders and 6th graders who created dances, music, masks, and skits inspired by artworks in our exhibition All the World’s a Stage: Performance in the Visual Arts.  The shyest students contributed by helping to plan, write, and direct the performances.  The boldest students reveled in the opportunity to show off in front of their peers.  Afterward, one teacher remarked that it was fun seeing her students in a new light, and the other felt it was a great program for bilingual students.

 This past Friday, I trained our volunteers and gave them the same challenges students experience during the program.  I watched as they worked together in groups, sometimes giggling, at times with their brows furrowed.  They all agreed that they can’t wait to bring the program to Dallas classrooms.

 It’s showtime!

Melissa Nelson
Manager of Learning Partnerships with the Community

New Resources for Teachers

ATWAS Pachy imageExplore ten works of art in the new All the World’s a Stage:Celebrating Performance in the Visual Arts teaching materials.   These resources include information, images, music, and  much more! 

I encourage you and your students to discover ways that these works of art communicate ideas about the power of performance.

Until next time…

Jenny Marvel
Manager of Learning Partnerships with Schools

I Want My DMA TV

DMA TV image

A recent addition to the Museum’s Web site is DMA TV,  This site stores a variety of multimedia content, like podcasts and videos, that relate to works of art in the Museum’s collection and special exhibitions, as well as public programs and community projects.   I am continually surprised by the treasure trove of information that is available and found a few gemstones that I think you might like as well.  




Just recently, more interviews with artists, dancers, musicians, actors, and scholars have been added to DMA TV in relationship to the new exhibition All the World’s a Stage:  Celebrating Performance in the Visual Arts.  This site is growing by leaps and bounds!

Happy watching and listening!

Until next time…

Jenny Marvel

Manager of Learning Partnerships with Schools

Gearing up for Tours

We’re definitely back in the swing of things here at the DMA, now that the new school year is well under way. Last Monday we had our first docent training of the semester, and we welcomed back almost 100 experienced docents as well as a class of 21 new docents.  Dr. Anne Bromberg, The Cecil and Ida Green Curator of Ancient and Asian Art, led our training on the new exhibition All the World’s a Stage

Our docents are rigorously trained volunteers who attend training at the Museum every Monday during the school year from 9:45 a.m. until 2:30 p.m.  These wonderful volunteers lead tours of our collection and special exhibitions for tens of thousands of K-12 students each year. We are all looking forward to these school tours starting again todocent trainingday!








Molly Kysar
Head of Teaching Programs

Getting to Know a Work of Art

Currently I am working on teaching materials for the All the World’s a Stage: Celebrating Performance in the Visual Arts exhibition.  Education staff creates online resources for the works in our collection as well as for special exhibitions.  One of my favorite aspects of writing and creating resources is getting to know a work of art on a more personal level.  Usually my research includes looking closely at the work of art, reading about the artwork and artist in the Museum’s object file (a file full of history about the object), and gathering information online and in books about the artist, culture, or the work of art.   

After the completion of the teaching materials, I often come away with one or two favorite works of art.  Although there are many shining stars in All the World’s a Stage, Nic Nicosia’s Act #9 stands out for several reasons.  

Nic Nicosia, Act #9, 1995

Nic Nicosia, Act #9, 1995

The idea that life is divided into multiple stages, from childhood to adulthood, might be translated into the chapters, or acts, of someone’s life.   The man in Act #9 appears as an old man – nearer to the conclusion of his life rather than the beginning.   This man, Nic Nicosia, the artist who made this work, stands on a stage.  By putting on makeup to appear older, he felt that he “became” the character.   It seems like he is facing an audience and delivering a monologue much like Willy Loman in Death of a Salesman. 

Without getting too philosophical, it is interesting to consider that we are all actors on the stage of life and we all have different roles to play.  There is no doubt that art is powerful and can have strong impact on how you see the world.  

Look forward to the launch of the All the World’s a Stage teaching materials in the next few weeks.

Until next time…

 Jenny Marvel

 Manager of Learning Partnerships with Schools

A Sneak Peek Behind the Curtain

Last week, our new special exhibition was unveiled to the public.  All the World’s a Stage brings together works of art in our collection that deal with the idea of performance.  Performance is a key theme at the DMA this year, as we get ready to welcome a new neighbor to the Arts District: the Dallas Center for the Performing Arts.

 All the World’s a Stage is an exciting exhibition because it brings so many of our favorite works of art together in one place.  You usually never see Shiva Nataraja and Romare Bearden’s Soul Three side-by-side, but they’re only one gallery apart from now until February.

Yoruba Egungun

Yoruba Egungun costume

I’m especially excited that our Yoruba Egungun costume from Nigeria is back on display.  This is one of my favorite works of art in our collection.  Its multiple layers of cloth were added year after year by family members, and it is fun to imagine who added them and why.  This costume is used during a ceremony to honor ancestors—quite different from how we honor our ancestors.  The Egungun ceremony includes singing and drumming, and the Egungun twirls through the crowd like a whirlwind.  It’s definitely a spectacle for the senses, and one I hope to see in person some day!

We’re offering a variety of programs for teachers and students relating to the theme of performance this year, including docent-guided tours of the exhibition.  I hope you’ll attend one of these programs so we can share the excitement of this exhibition with your students.

Shannon Karol                                                                                                                                                                                                                         Tour Coordinator


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