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December 2010
Maya Exhibition coming to SLAM
Main Exhibition Galleries, February 13–May 8, 2011

Fiery Pool: The Maya and the Mythic Sea brings together over 90 works, many never before seen in the United States, to offer exciting insights into the culture of the ancient Maya. Surrounded by the sea and dependent on the life-giving power of rain and clouds, the ancient Maya created fantastic objects imbued with the symbolic power of water.

This exhibition presents four thematic sections — Water and Cosmos, Creatures of the Fiery Pool, Navigating the Cosmos, and Birth to Rebirth — that explore the different ways Maya artists represented water, from setting religious narratives in watery domains to using shells and other exotic materials acquired through coastal trade networks.

Fiery Pool: The Maya and the Mythic Sea is organized by the Peabody Essex Museum, Salem, Mass., and has been made possible in part by the National Endowment for the Humanities: Because democracy demands wisdom. Additional support was provided by ECHO (Education through Cultural and Historical Organizations), a program of the U.S. Department of Education, Office of Innovation and Improvement.

For Students and Teachers

Make plans to attend!

Click here for Fiery Pool teaching suggestions and to learn about special group ticket prices for students and their teachers.
Mark Your Calendars: Big Event for Teachers
Monday, March 7, 2011

Enter the captivating realm of Maya art and culture through the Museum's special exhibition, Fiery Pool: The Maya and the Mythic Sea, during this afternoon of professional development workshops designed for teachers.
  ·  View recently excavated and rarely seen objects which illuminate the impact of water on Maya cosmology and imagery
  ·  Learn teaching techniques incorporating the language of hieroglyphics and archaeology
  ·  Develop an arts vocabulary for student discussion and analysis

Area scholars and educators will share classroom-tested practices useful for integrating history, language arts, science, and other content areas with the study of Mesoamerican civilization.

Workshop descriptions to be announced beginning January 2011. Please check www.slam.org/teachers for updates.
Master Teacher Fellowship — Application Deadline March 1!
Do you have a talent for seeing "the big idea?"

Are you interested in exploring the relationships between art and other academic disciplines?

Do you possess effective communication and collaboration skills?

Are you interested in developing engaging and creative learning strategies that encourage students and teachers to expand their perspectives?

Why not apply for the summer fellowship at the Saint Louis Art Museum?

Click here for more information about applying.
High School Art Project 2010
On October 25, area high school students had an interactive half-day workshop where they considered how artists create meaning in abstract art. Carla Tuetken, Hazelwood West High School Arts Teacher and 2010 Saint Louis Art Museum Master Teacher Fellow, led the workshop.

The students were challenged to explore how technique affects what contemporary artists make and what viewers see. They also considered how materials help facilitate an artist's intentions, and how visual elements combine with sensory impressions to influence the perception of and response to abstract art. Students put those concepts into action to create a work using a variety of techniques.

Look for Carla's related workshop for teachers, Abstraction: A Varied Point of View, on January 25, 2011. (Pre-registration required; see our 2010–11 Teacher Programs guide for details.)
We have a Winner!
The following story by Elisa Roth, Art Teacher at Old Bonhomme Elementary, was selected to be printed. Congratulations, Elisa, you will receive a gift from the Museum!

Elisa Roth: " Every year I have the opportunity to take my first grade class to the Art Museum thanks to the generous support of our PTO and their funds. We often do a seek-and-find looking for artists, styles, periods, etc. But one year I chose to have docents lead the students around the Museum and lead the discussions.

I loved the interaction I heard with one of these groups and the docent. They were seated on the second floor in front of Ellsworth Kelly'sSpectrum II, and the docent began talking about the piece. She asked if the piece was realistic or abstract. The students were excited. They all raised their hands, wiggling on the floor to answer. The docent called on one student in the front row. He answered, 'Neither'.

The docent looked down smiling and said, 'Well, I think ...' and the boy politely interrupted. 'It is neither because the painting is all about colors and shapes, not objects, so it must be non-objective!' The docent was pleasantly surprised and slightly taken aback. She quickly agreed as did the other students. The discussion continued along the path of non-objective art and its importance to the world.

I was so proud of my little first graders to bring their art vocabulary to the Museum and be able to put it into context. The docent was thrilled to have the next level of discussion and we all learned a lot! "

Teachers, please continue to send stories to Educator.newsletter@slam.org.