Guggenheim’s Learning Through Art Presents A Year with Children 2024

Guggenheim’s Learning Through Art Presents A Year with Children 2024
Installation view, A Year with Children 2024, Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York, April 5 –June 9, 2024. Photo: Ariel Ione Williams © Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation

Guggenheim’s Learning Through Art Presents A Year with Children 2024

Now through this summer, visitors to the Guggenheim will be able to see artworks created by New York City students alongside works by renowned artists like Vincent van Gogh and Georges Seurat. 

A Year With Children, an exhibition presented by the Guggenheim’s Learning Through Art (LTA) education program, features over 300 imaginative artworks by students in grades two through six in New York City public schools across the five boroughs. 

Learning Through Art is the Guggenheim’s artist-in-residency program, where teaching artists go into public schools in the city to collaborate with classroom teachers to develop, facilitate and integrate art projects into the school curriculum. 

Installation view, A Year with Children 2024, Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York, April 5 –June 9, 2024. Photo: Ariel Ione Williams © Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation
Installation view, A Year with Children 2024, Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York, April 5 –June 9, 2024. Photo: Ariel Ione Williams © Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation

“These teaching artists work closely with classroom teachers to develop a unique curriculum that explores work in the Museum but also connects to an aspect of their classroom and personal lives,” says Cyra Levenson, deputy director of education and public engagement at the Guggenheim. 

Teaching artists visit schools 20 times throughout the school year and classes make trips to visit the Guggenheim, where they learn how to engage critically with the art. The result is the final project presented in the exhibition A Year With Children, on view now through June 9. 

LTA students explored themes of identity, community building, storytelling and more; these themes are visible in the students’ works, and every project has its own story. 

For example, students at PS 219 in Queens thought about how their individual characteristics support their community. With these ideas in mind, students created individual soft sculptures that were then installed together as an entire community. 

Meanwhile, students at PS 86 in the Bronx investigated the power of resilience shown in works of art and discussed challenges and the emotions they felt as a result. The final product is individual light boxes that demonstrate a personal journey of finding light in dark times. 

Installation view, A Year with Children 2024, Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York, April 5 –June 9, 2024. Photo: Ariel Ione Williams © Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation
Installation view, A Year with Children 2024, Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York, April 5 –June 9, 2024. Photo: Ariel Ione Williams © Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation

Levenson says one of the best parts of LTA is that it gives participants the space for self-discovery and self-expression. 

“The LTA project, as well as the exhibition more specifically, allow us to share and celebrate the creativity of the students, teachers and artists who participate in the program,” Levenson says. “As an art museum, that is one of our most important roles.”

The exhibition and the LTA program at large demonstrates the Guggenheim’s devotion to arts education. 

“Museums are a destination for all, and visitors are often surprised to see student artworks on the walls of a museum,” Levenson says. “The Guggenheim’s 53-year commitment to this program and exhibition demonstrates its commitment to making art accessible and validating the importance of the arts as an integral part of our educational system.” 

The works presented in A Year With Children represent ideas of the next generation of artists, and Levenson hopes those who come through the exhibition find inspiration through the student’s art. 

“A visitor once told a staff member that they greatly enjoyed the exhibition because they loved seeing artwork made by local, emerging artists,” Levenson says. “We couldn’t agree more, and hope visitors leave feeling inspired by the energy and unique perspective of students.”  

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