Les Amis de Beauford Delaney is partnering with the Wells International Foundation (WIF) to take the Beauford Delaney: Resonance of Form and Vibration of Color exhibition to the U.S.!

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Saturday, May 27, 2017

Beauford's Art Inspires Knoxville Elementary School Students


Information card from West View Elementary School Arts Night
Image courtesy of The Links Incorporated, Knoxville Chapter

"Bringing Beauford Delaney Home" is an educational program that is part of Gathering Light: The Beauford Delaney Project, the multifaceted community project that has taken Beauford's hometown of Knoxville by storm. It is designed to teach the children of Knoxville and Knox County about Beauford's life and work and inspire them to create their own art based on what they learn about him.

The Knoxville Museum of Art (KMA), the Knoxville chapter of The Links, Incorporated, and West View Elementary School worked together to implement the pilot program, which took place from February 2 through March 31 at the school and the museum.

Twenty-six (26) children, grades K-5, participated in the program. Members of the Knoxville, TN chapter of The Links, Incorporated volunteered to assist West View Elementary School educators at student workshops.

The program began on February 2 with a parent-children workshop, where Chief Curator Stephen Wicks of KMA presented an overview of Beauford's work and asked questions of the audience to gauge interest and comprehension. The children created woven abstract mats for the event.

Links volunteer observes as kids create art
Image courtesy of Link Sylvia Peters

Working diligently
Image courtesy of Link Sylvia Peters

On February 16, students participated in a workshop during which they studied the elements of art such as line, shading, shape, and learned how these are used to create landscapes. They also learned about abstract art, with Beauford's work serving as an example.

KMA hosted a Family Fun Day on February 16, where entry to the museum was free. The museum offered door prizes and organized art activities, face painting, and a magic show for attendees.

Additional student art workshops were held at West View Elementary on February 23 and March 2.

On March 9, students were given a KMA tour to see Beauford's work hanging in the "Changing Fortunes, Changing Scenes" section of the permanent exhibition called Higher Ground in the museum's gallery.

Children at the museum
Image courtesy of Link Sylvia Peters

Learning about Beauford's abstract Scattered Light
Image courtesy of Link Sylvia Peters

Learning about Beauford's Portrait of Delia Delaney
Image courtesy of Link Sylvia Peters

"Bringing Beauford Delaney Home" culminated on the evening of March 30, when West View Elementary hosted Arts Night. The school proudly displayed the works that the children created throughout the eight-week program.

Arts Night display wall
Image courtesy of The Links Incorporated, Knoxville Chapter

Arts Night - abstract work
Image courtesy of The Links Incorporated, Knoxville Chapter

Arts Night - abstract and figurative works
Image courtesy of The Links Incorporated, Knoxville Chapter

These works will be hung in the Children's Gallery at KMA in June 2017.

Due to the success of the pilot program, the Beauford Delaney Project Council is determined to take "Bringing Beauford Delaney Home" into additional schools as early as September 2017 and to expand the program to students in grades 6-12.


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