Today's blog post was written by Sharon McCawley, a current docent at the Museum who moved to Santa Fe three years ago from Los Angeles. She was an educational therapist and the Coordinator for the Arts Program for her school specializing in drama, opera, dance, playwriting, and visual arts.


Ladies and Gentleman and Children of All Ages – a fun-filled program of creative and challenging entertainments is at your fingertips if you are willing to take a chance at the resource, or really the game centers at the New Mexico Museum of Art Galleries.

Step right up! Don't be shy!

Meet our Ringmasters – Rebecca Aubin, Head of Education and Visitor Experience, and
Chris Nail, Museum Educator/Volunteer Coordinator – who are presenting you with active, creative, and provoking experiences. Enjoy your museum in an innovative atmosphere.

Become as worthy an artist as anyone you see on any wall or read in any book.

First of all, participate in our STEAM PROGRAMS every Sunday throughout June, July, and August. Be sure not to miss STEAM Community Day, Sunday, August 26th, 2018 from noon to 4 o'clock.

Go on scavenger hunts, make art, play Bingo, learn how the artists you view have learned to use STEAM, just like you.

STEAM is an acronym:

Just like SCUBA and RADAR. Do you know what the letters represent? Can you think of other acronyms?

STEAM programs are being applied throughout all grades in schools as well as museums. These programs encourage self- inquiry, open ended discussions, and critical thinking. They emphasize experience, problem-solving, and creativity, not rote memorization.
Learn how to:
Investigate by exploring visually and formulating connections;
Discover by playing and manipulating materials and media;
Connect by comparing art, community and self;
Create by becoming a visual or verbal artist as you draw, sketch, color, or write;
Reflect by thinking about your experience and your work as you share your feedback in the Gallery Notebooks. Take a photograph of your work and post it.
drawing by a visitor to the museum
Visit HORIZONS where you will see images of ZOZOBRA painted by its originator, the artist Will Shuster. Zozobra is a giant, paper-stuffed figure chockfull of written notes of gloom, bad luck, and general unhappiness. When it is burned, all your sorrows will hopefully go up in smoke. Write down your woes and put them in the Gallery Gloom Box.
Will Shuster's Zozobra mural
Gloom Box
Admire the prints and furniture of Gustave Baumann. Complete the pages from his Coloring Book (which is available in the Gift Shop) and design your own chair with your own symbols.
Gustave Baumann chairs

Locate a work of art which triggers a story. Create a narrative which explains the content . Write down the story and draw what you anticipate will happen next.

Then go on to view the deliberately staged photographs of PATRICK NAGATANI. You should try to interpret the meaning of RADIOACTIVE REDS by identifying the characters, the action, the context, and the story. Nagatani uses super saturated color as an acknowledgment to the healing power of color in the application of CHROMOTHERAPY. Red is a particularly symbolic color for ripeness, blood, anger, debt, fire, and emergency. Also symbolic is the application of light with its references to blindness, illumination, and radiation, as a cause and a cure for disease. Choose red or any other color you respond to and write a color poem which reacts to all your senses. Nagatani was of Japanese heritage and was devoted to traditions such as composing haiku, a three line poem of five, seven, and five syllables. Write your own; it is quite easy and calming.

Such soft sounds and sights
Refresh our spirits and soothe
The sphere we trouble.

Finally, enjoy and examine the works of Frederick Hammersley who meticulously documented all the sequences of creating a work of art. Like him, you can design thumbnail sketches , vary them, manipulate them, and finally create a finished composition. Hammersley incorporated geometrical shapes within his works. See if you can locate them. Can you find others like Venn diagrams and Moebius strips? Hammersley even created art using the symbols on a computer keypad. You can follow this tradition by making a picture using the keys on our typewriter for capital letters, numerals, characters, spaces, and overstrikes. It will be like creating your own password. The sequence of letters, numbers, and symbols, QWERTY, on the modern keyboards of Smartphones, Androids, Laptops dates back to the 19th century to ease the transmission from Morse Code to typewritten script.

Frederick Hammersley's thumbnail sketches

We can apply STEAM technology to modernize this sequence. There does exist a modern sequence called DSK:
Dvorak (nothing to do with the composer)

This is what it looks like:

1234567890( )
', . PYFGCRL/=
AOEUIDHTNS- (home row)
; QJKXBMWVZ ( slowest row)

It's supposed to use 60% less finger motion and reduce repetitive stress injuries.
What would Hammersley have thought? What do you think?