Tag Archives: guest blog

Experience Geffrye YAP with Orlane’s Guest Blog @GeffryeYouth

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Ever wondered what it was like to be part of a Youth Group in a museum?  Here Orlane Doumbe describes her experience.  Thanks for sharing Orlane!

 

By Orlane Doumbe

I joined the Geffrye YAP because I love to help being a part of something big. I love getting involved in activities and helping to organize events is really just a big bonus. I’ve only just joined in September and have only attended one YAP meeting – the atmosphere was so open and friendly, it felt like I’m already a part of the family! In this one meeting alone, I’ve signed up to participate in a half-term Digital Media workshop at the Wallace Collection with the Geffrye and Chocolate Films. Also, I will be able to help with a Chocolate Films upcoming project about London in the eyes of a Londoner. These are just a few of the many things I’ve done in two hours!

In a typical Geffrye YAP meeting, we all eat first. There’s plenty of refreshments for all of us which is very useful for me especially as I go there directly from school! After this, we’re given an agenda and during the meeting we go through as much as we can. We also take votes, sometimes we could watch things in relation to our topic(s) and most of all this is done in a relaxed environment. We also input our ideas in different forms. We can verbally communicate to each other or sometimes we can also write it on a post-it note and read them all out. My favourite thing I’ve gotten out of the Geffrye YAP so far is being able to work with a Digital Media Company for 3 and a half days. I’m so thrilled with this opportunity because I’ve always wanted to learn how to use Media from a professional viewpoint rather than the average Keek video or Instagram picture. If this is what you experience after a single meeting alone, I can’t wait to see what I will do in a year’s time.

I think other young people should join museum youth panels because it’s a really great way to balance literally everything. In museum youth panels you learn so much, you learn about collaboration and teamwork, debating and voting. All these qualities build up your self-confidence which is a key skill especially today. We also learn marketing when doing events, this helps with the financial aspect of it all; as you learn how to organise money in the best way possible. This is shown when you’re given a project and you’re given a budget to spend on the project. Not only this, it’s a great CV enhancement as it shows that you’re not just someone with their heads in books 24/7 but you’re an active citizen in your local community.

I think young people will get an open mind when visiting museums because it makes you more aware of the past. It personally motivates me because I think to myself if these people who are dead made such a mark on the earth that even their belongings such as sofas, sculptures etc. are still on display in our generation. I want to be a part of something like that when I’m older, and would then be able to motivate other young people who are looking at the works we’ve done. So visiting museums will enlighten or dishearten your view on history, it will make a difference to your perception of life and it also motivates you to make history yourself.

Guest Blog: The Geffrye’s Youth Advisory Panel @GeffryeYouth

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NB:  This was originally created for Museums Practice but re-run with permission from Geffreye’s Youth Advisory Panel:

The Geffrye’s Youth Advisory Panel: Programming responsive and engaging workshops and events for other young people
By: Shakeel Akram, Youth Advisory Panel Member, Geffrye Museum

logoThe Geffrye’s Youth Advisory Panel (YAP) compromises of young people from across East London and as such we are well suited to providing relevant ideas for both monthly workshops and workshops to be held on the two significant event days as we are aware of what our community would enjoy. The YAP regularly influence the museum’s public programme by contributing our ideas in relation to the themes of the collection. All of the workshops and events we plan are discussed amongst the panel with the aim to link ideas with objects and themes from across the museum and gardens.

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Guest Blog: An update from our friends at Diamond Friends Forever @DFF_DiaMu

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Senna Theuwissen (25) youngster of Diamond Friends Forever, University Degree in Fine Arts and studying Social Work, specialization in Art and Culture Mediation. 

An addition to the posts from Nathalie, Brent and Claudia to keep you updated about our experiences and progress realizing the Pop-Up Diamond Museum.

In less than a few days the museum will open the doors to the public. We are finishing the last details but also making a new start by building up our ideas and letting them get to life. A lot still has to be done, but bit by bit it is taking shape. The vernissage is Tuesday the 2nd of July and the museum will be officially open on Wednesday the 3rd of July. I am looking forward to the weekend before the grand opening because we all will come back together to help Nathalie and Brent with all kinds of things that still have to be done. After weeks of separation because of work or exams we will be reunited.

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Guest Blog: A Year in the Life Of Teen Art Gallery 2012-2013 @TeenArtGallery

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tagDirector Charlotte Lee shares what life at Teen Art Gallery for a year was like.  The good, the bad and the ugly.  Thanks for sharing and the honesty! 

September

We have our first meeting of the year with our new T.A.G. Team. We don’t know each other that well yet and haven’t figured out how to work smoothly as a team. We need to decide out who will work on which aspects of the organization. Matthew Pasquarelli has already been improving the website. We set the date for the submissions period and all of us have the role of reaching out to different schools and art programs to solicit submissions. Chaya Howell will create fliers to put up in schools.  Everyone has interesting ideas It is a lively discussion; we talk about the website, fundraising, a possible TAG Zine, and the exhibitions.

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Putting Heart into Art History: by Teenage Blogger Emily Zauzmer

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All I Really Need to Know I Learned in Kindergarten is a book by Robert Fulghum, and for me, the titular phrase is quite true. I learned to tie my shoes, I learned to share – and I learned that I have a passion for art history.

My kindergarten teacher introduced the class to the wonders of art history in a delightful way: She had each student paint his or her own rendition of Vincent van Gogh’s The Starry Night. Perhaps my artistic skills were not on par with those of the legendary painter – why did I leave out the cypress tree anyway? – but my love of art history was ignited with more fire than van Gogh’s glimmering stars.

Femilyvangoghollowing this art project, five-year-old me begged my parents to take me to New York City to see the Post-Impressionist masterpiece at the Museum of Modern Art. (This must have not come as much of a surprise to anyone, as I had dragged my family to Plymouth Rock after the teacher’s Thanksgiving lesson on the Mayflower.)

About a decade later, in a seemingly unrelated turn of events, my family made plans to vacation at the Iowa State Fair to experience that quintessential slice of Americana. A week or so before the trip, I happened to come across the Wikipedia page for the Dibble House, the white home with the iconic Gothic window that Grant Wood immortalized in American Gothic. My fates were aligning: the Dibble House was in Iowa. “I see an amazing photo op!” I gushed to my family in an email asking if we could add the Dibble House to our itinerary.

That explains why on August 21, 2011, I found myself in a quaint town called Eldon, where a small house with a steep roof serves as the center of attraction. The American Gothic House Center supplies replica pitchforks and costumes so that visitors can pose as the famous man and woman in front of the actual house that Wood depicted.

americangothicAfter my brother and I snapped our own keepsake photograph, I wanted to have a use for my American Gothic re-creation – after all, what fun is a re-creation if it serves only as a unique Facebook profile picture? It dawned on me that I could make an art history blog.

At first, I was a bit wary.  Would anyone read my blog? Would I essentially be writing for myself? Nevertheless, with a year of AP Art History under my belt, I decided to enter the blogosphere by creating Heartwork.

On Heartwork, I blog about my creative adventures in art history. These adventures have included picture re-creations (American Gothic, Norman Rockwell’s Freedom from Want, Leonardo da Vinci’s Vitruvian Man, James McNeill Whistler’s Whistler’s Mother) and edible artwork (The Starry Night in cupcakes). I have also blogged about my visit to a nearby park with sculptures of famous paintings, and posts about my trips to museums are coming.

The response to Heartwork has been incredibly rewarding, and many individuals have kindly tweeted about the blog. Excitingly, within its first few weeks of existence, Heartwork has been viewed in Australia, Austria, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, France, Germany, Indonesia, Ireland, Italy, Mexico, the Netherlands, New Zealand, the Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Spain, Sweden, Thailand, the United Kingdom, and the United States.

My great wish is that Heartwork will continue to grow not only through me but also through my visitors. If they email me (emilybz@comcast.net) photographs of their endeavors in art history like picture re-creations, I will be thrilled to post the photographs on the blog.

In my mind, there are two possible paths for the future of art history: If we fall prey to the notion that art history is comprised merely of antiquated relics with no importance to today, both museums and societies will suffer. But if we embrace art history as a meaningful and vibrant subject matter, we will find that works of art can reveal profound truths about us and our cultures.

To choose the latter option, we each need to forge our own connections with artwork – to make art history our own. I sincerely hope that Heartwork inspires viewers to make art history a fun and relevant part of their lives. After all, putting heart into art history is really what Heartwork is all about.

 

Diamond Friends Forever Guest blog June 17th @DFF_DiaMu

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By Claudia Demaeght (youngster of DFF)

As mentioned in the last blog of Nathalie and Brent I, as a member of the group communication, will elaborate on the subject of social media.

2013-05-18 12.45.59To introduce the project and make our target group enthusiastic to visit our museum, the group communication received a budget. The budget wasn’t very large, but that was rather a challenge than a threat to us. One of the cheapest ways to communicate these days is through social media and because youngsters are very present on the social media, this was one of the main elements of our communication plan.

We divided our plan into 4 subgroups, namely: online communication, guerilla marketing, offline communication and press. I will tell you a bit more about these parts that integrate social media.

communicatie 2In our group, Justin, Jacob and I discussed al lot on the subject of social media. Eventually we confined ourselves to the 2 most popular among youngsters: Facebook and Twitter. We thought this was the most efficient way to reach our target audience. Brent and Nathalie made a Facebook-account for DFF at the beginning of the project, and with more than 250 likes this was already a good medium to reach a lot of people. We want to use Facebook for both information and fun.  You will find information like where, when, who and why but also pictures and crazy facts about diamonds bearing in mind the ‘ like and share principle ‘. We want to make sure that people like our page and share things they like with their friends. Starting from the launch of our guerilla marketing campaign we want to use our campaign image as cover image on the page. That way the campaign image will be well-known by our visitors.

89b0f2541b87432d4806e2017bfabde9Twitter was the second social networking site we decided to use. We use Twitter to reach more international audience. Therefore we deliberately communicate in English. Because you are restricted to 140 characters we will use it to post short informational messages but also short fun facts about diamonds. Other social media we thought about to use were Instagram, Pinterest and Tumblr. In Belgium our target audience is not as present on these social media as in America and the UK so we decided to just focus on Facebook and Twitter.

Facebook and Twitter are not the best channels to tell the whole DFF-story, that’s why a WordPress website is being created right now. My co-worker Justin is a handyman when it comes to graphic design so I am already curious to see the result!

fashionableBecause we were encouraged by Nathalie and Brent to think outside the box we wanted to create something fun and unexpected for the guerilla action, something that people will talk about. The winning idea was to distribute a lot of saddle covers for bicycles on places that youngsters and tourist will visit during the period before and during the launch of the museum. Kind of a saddle cover raid! On these covers the DFF-website will be mentioned and here the visitors can participate in a contest to win a real diamond!

The DFF-Facebook and Twitter page will also be present on all the offline media like on beer mats, posters, postcards, flyers and on trams. I hope by the launch of the museum we have a lot of ‘likes’ and ‘followers’… and that our efforts will be rewarded!

You can still visit us on Facebook (DFFDiamondFriendsForever) ,Twitter (DFF_DiaMu) and soon on www.diamondfriedsforever.be!

Diamond Friends Forever Guest Blog: third follow-up @DFF_DiaMu

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by Nathalie Brejaart & Brent Blockx

I2013-04-02 13.23.03t’s been three weeks since our last blog and there’s a lot going on right now.

In March we submerged our DFF youngsters in the world of Diamonds. They visited the Diamond museum in Grobbendonk and we took them on an exclusive tour through the ‘Diamond Square Mile’. So it can be said that the youngsters now have a lot of impressions and theoretical input.

Because we want to bring participatory tools into our museum we did some inspiration visits with the DFF’ers.

2013-04-02 14.11.41The first long trip was to Eindhoven where we visited the Van Abbemuseum, a contemporary art museum. On their website, they make it appear as if they’re a ‘curious museum’ and they want to convey this to their visitors. Therefore, we went out! Unfortunately, we found little curious elements in the exhibits on display. We learned later on that the curious (participatory) elements vary strongly from exhibit to exhibit.

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Guest Blog: Jeugd en Poëzie Youth and Poetry

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ondertekening-roxWelcome to the living room in your head, where everyone is welcome for some afternoon delight or skyrockets in flight.

Jeugd en Poëzie (youth and poetry) is an organization in the Flemish part of Belgium who is trying to open the doors of imaginary living rooms everywhere.

By using metaphors you can tell your story without giving away everything immediately.

The poet doesn’t always want you to analyze his every word so you can discover the true meaning. Truth of the matter is, the writer wants you to fill the poem with your very own background and life as it is. Read and pour all you have in the poem.

Take for instance, this poem, written by Silke Vanhoof:

You, the undefined purpose of my lingering

You, the unfulfilled labor of my wandering

You, my tend to commit a crime in the cry of my demanding mind

You, my unrevealed rebel of pleasure and pavement in rewind

You, the undivided army of my wrecked out wrists

You, the unconsciousness of my worn out fists

You, the unsayable sourness of forced out smiles

You, my unwillingly running of nights endless miles

You, the unbearable transparency of my shouting skin 

You, the unreadable silence of speaking

You, my undone harm you unchosen road

You the caressing rope around my throat

Who that ‘you’ is, is up to the reader. If you use the poem as a mirror of your own relationships it becomes more then just words. The poem becomes you, or do you become the poem?

Silke is one of the many youngsters we guide in their journey from writing in their real living room, to writing books and performing on stages.

Youth and poetry is the negotiator between poets and their audience and developed a poetic collective called Brandmerk, especially for poets between the ages of fifteen and thirty years old.

If you consider writing your own poem after reading this, don’t think it’s only for the smartest ones among us, or the most literate. Poetry is in fact, fairly easy to get written down on paper. All you need is a pen, some paper, a dictionary and something to say. A secret (a white lie or a real lie) is always a good start. And don’t forget about metaphors. Look for inspiration in as many different shapes as you can find. Poetry is everywhere, you just need to get your poetry-goggles on. Good luck!

While we set up skyscrapers of language wherein junkies sided by judges mirror mirror themselves and finally find

all of our own worn-out appearances and so-called conducting make-believe constructions to be

(A fragment of another poem by Silke Vanhoof.)

If you would like a professional eye to read your poetry, don’t hesitate to mail us at dichter@jeugdenpoezie.be

Diamond Friends Forever Guest Blog: first follow-up @DFF_DiaMu

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DFF-logoby Brent Blockx and Nathalie Brejaart

In our first blog we introduced the DFF-project. A lot of elements were unclear then and are still now. But! Last weekend we had our first meeting with the coregroup of DFF. But let’s not get ahead of ourselves. How on earth did we gather these youngsters?

We’re currently in our fifth week of our internship. Our primairy goal when we started was launching the call for youngsters to participate in the DFF-project. AmuseeVous already launched the call the week before, using there normal channels (facebook, mailing,…). Nathalie and me set out to reach a wider audience. Therefore we contacted a lot of organizations and schools. The organizations varied from art- or culture organizations to organizations working with youngsters in troubled situations. The schools were mainly the colleges from Antwerp and the university. We also contacted a few high schools trying to reach youngsters studying something that has nothing to do with culture or art. Continue reading →

Guest Blog: Diamond Friends Forever (Antwerp, Belgium) @DFF_DiaMu

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Brent Blockx (24) and Nathalie Brejaart (23) are currently in their final bachelor year Social Work, specilazation Art- and Culture Mediator. The DFF-project is the main goal for their internship and also the subject of their bachelor paper. Both already completed a bachelor as teacher and are active in different cultural organisations.

The Diamond Museum of Antwerp is temporarely without a home. They had to leave their former building to make room for the expansion of an event hall. This, evidently, posed a huge problem…

Where could the collection be displayed now?

DFF-logoThat’s were we, Brent & Nathalie, come in to the equation. We are doing an internship for AmuseeVous, an organization that tries to bring youngsters and museums/culture closer together. For our internship we were already thinking of designing some sort of pop-up museum with real museum objects. The fact that the Diamond Museum went without a building created an excellent opportunity to join forces.

So now we’re given the chance to build a museum from scratch, using objects from the collection of the Diamond Museum. We can tell you this: that’s more than we dared to dream of! Every aspect is left in our (hopefully) capable hands. But we’re not going to do everything ourselves.

In order to create the best experience for youngsters (age 18-26) we are currently attracting other young people to join in. We launched a call that we’re looking for DFF: Diamond Friends Forever. Those Diamonds Friends will form a coreteam (approxamately 10 persons) that will be the principal thinking tank. Nathalie and myself will coach these youngsters.

This bunch of different characters are given the opportunity to spill every crazy idea and thought on how a museum must look and what it must do to be interesting for youngsters. Thus truely creating a museum by and for young people.

Everything is up for discussion: from labels to lighting, from entrancefees to guided tours. The feedback we can gather from this temporarily museum will be used for a publication and will be implemented in the Diamond Museum once it has found a new home. The efforts from the Diamond Friends will be put to good use and not only result in a ‘one-time-thing’.

2013-02-13 11.54.58We’re currently prospecting possible locations for the project in the heart of Antwerp. A few totally different options already passed the revue: an old vault from a former bank, an empty static manor, a youth hostel, a few abandoned stores… We’re trying to look beyond the ‘typical’ locations. But for now our search continues. The location is one of the only elements that the Diamond Friends can’t decide on. And that’s purely because of a limited timeframe and from the point of security issues.The timeframe in a rough draft is as followed: at the beginning of March we’ll set up our think tank of Diamond Friends (which we’re currently selecting). The Diamond Friends will work on the preparations for the pop-up museum till the end of may. Leaving june to set everything up at the location and to prepare the opening which will take place on the 29th of june. The pop-upmuseum will be open from then till August 31st.

You can follow us on Facebook (DFFDiamondFriendsForever) and Twitter (DFF_DiaMu) to be kept up to date of the project. For more on the Diamondmuseum of Antwerp click here. More information on AmuseeVous can be found here.

 

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