Everything I needed to know about art, I learned from my Kindergardener
There's that book, "Everything I needed to know in life, I learned in kindergarden." While I personally find the concept that the simplistic lessons foisted on us by well meaning grown ups whilst we lived in an artificially safe environment don't translate well to "Life in the Big City", I do find I learn an awful lot from those who don't.
One of my favorite pastimes is taking my daughter to museums. She's turning 6 in November, but that kid has been to more than 60 museums. I've stopped counting, as at this point we get into "do the Smithsonians count as one?" And she's also at that age where everything is "Why?" I love this age. I know it's not going to last, which makes me cherish it all the more.
This weekend we went to see the National Gallery of the Arts, along with a AJ's Jewish Grandma, Ellen. It's a bit funny having two adults who both know the insides of museums. We ended up taking turns being tour guides. (I worked at the Franklin Institute for 10 years, Ellen runs a tour company that specialized in Art.) So here we were, two grown ups that could tell you about the time period the painting was made in, the links between the artist and the other artist across the gallery. Interesting tidbits about the people who donated the works to the museum...
And all the while Alessandra was asking questions like "What is she doing in that painting?" "Why is he so sad?" "Are those geese still alive?"
For all our sophistication, for all our knowledge, I think the grown ups had largely missed the point, and the Kindergardner was dead on.
To quote one elderly woman who passed by our merry trio "Everyone should have a small child to see art with."