Florida Atlantic University’s University Galleries in the Dorothy F. Schmidt College of Arts and Letters will present works by high school students from Boynton Beach High School and Dreyfoos School of the Arts in the exhibition “Florida: Inside and Out.” The show will run from Friday, April 21 through Friday, May 5. An opening reception will take place on Friday, April 21 from 6 to 8 p.m. in the Schmidt Center Gallery Public Space, 777 Glades Road, Boca Raton campus. Both the reception and exhibition are free and open to the public.
The Museum Education Program of the University Galleries has developed partnerships with Boynton Beach High School through its visual arts teacher Gwenn Seuling, and Dreyfoos School of the Arts in West Palm Beach with English teacher Carly Gates. Their students will present original art works and writings inspired by their field experience at FAU.
The work in “Florida: Inside and Out” includes student responses to two different exhibitions. The first, “Florida Dreaming,” an exhibition organized by guest curator, Erica Ando, included works by Floridian artists who look at the dreams and obstacles that compel people to make South Florida their home. The exhibition included site-specific installation, photography, paintings, video and mixed-media works. The second exhibition, “Community Justice: The Black Panther Party & Other Civil Rights Movements,” used photography, film/video, along with vintage and digital print materials to explore the social justice movements of the 1960s and 1970s, highlighting the change provoking programs they instituted.
Since 2005, the Museum Education Program has been recognized by the School District of Palm Beach County as an approved field experience provider. Each academic year, the program produces lesson plans and teaching activities that contain a variety of approaches and cross-disciplinary content that allow teachers to plan trips to the University Galleries' exhibitions.
FAU students trained in educational theories within museums practices lead the tours of the selected exhibitions. At the core of these field experiences is arts integration, an approach to teaching that engages a student to connect the creative process or art form with another subject area in order to gain a deeper understanding of both.
The high school exhibition demonstrates the students’ creative approach to multiple disciplines and supports the University Galleries’ role as a dynamic extension of the classroom in providing arts education to the Palm Beach School District and its community.
“This is an experience that can’t be replicated in the classroom,” Gates said. “To be able to go beyond the assignment to share what you’ve created with the community is incredible. Our students feel like real artists and writers.”
Museum Education programs are made possible by the Kaye Endowment for Arts Integration and the Community Foundation of Palm Beach and Martin Counties.
The University Galleries at FAU are open to the public Tuesdays through Fridays, from 1 to 4 p.m. and Saturdays, from 1 to 5 p.m. Group and class tours are welcome during public hours as well as at other times scheduled by appointment. For more information, contact the Galleries at 561-297-2661 or visit www.fau.edu/galleries.