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Looking for something fun to do with the family over school vacation? The answer is right in your own backyard. Get out and explore some of the best family programs Connecticut has to offer! Each session features new art activities ranging from fiber arts to painting to collage. Funding for Art Adventures is provided by the Northeast Utilities Foundation.
For details, call or e-mail:
Kathryn Matsuzaki, Coordinator of School & Family Programs
(860) 229-0257, ext. 220; This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it


A Midsummer Night’s Dream by New Britain Youth Theater
7-9 p.m., Thursday, June 25, 2015
7-9 p.m., Friday, June 26, 2015
2-4 p.m., Sunday, June 28, 2015
(Includes one 15-minute intermission)

Craft activity 30 minutes prior to performance start time
Free for all; suitable for all ages!
The NBMAA is proud to partner with New Britain Youth Theater (NBYT) for their very special Teen Company production of William Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream, set in Colonial America. Join fireflies and fairies for an evening under the stars (or afternoon under the clouds) as talented teen actors perform this enchanting play on the Museum’s lawn. Bring a blanket or lawn chairs to sit on, and make your own fairy gear with Museum educators 30 minutes prior to each performance.

NBYT is a leading community and educational theater with programs including “Kids on Stage!” and “Little Kids on Stage!” productions, the NBYT Teen Company, Stage Performance classes, community outreach programs, and more, NBYT is dedicated to enriching the lives of children and young adults by encouraging creative thinking and collaborative teamwork, fostering self-confidence and self-esteem, and developing social and academic skills through involvement in high-quality, lost-cost programs in the performing arts.

Summer Art Adventure’s
3-day Weekly Sessions (Tuesday through Thursday)
10:30 a.m.-noon
$12 Members; $18 non-Members per weekly session
Ages 6+ (Preregistration strongly suggested)

Session 1: July 7, 8, and 9
Project: Fantastic Plastic!
Boundary Conditions, the awe-inspiring plexiglass and metal installation that hangs over the Museum’s LeWitt Family Staircase will be the inspiration for creating fantastic sculptures in mixed plastic and other mediums. Art Adventurers will add color to their creations and then shape them to reflect their imaginations. Other sculptures in plastic may be explored as well.

Artist-in-Residence Joan Shackford
Joan Shackford has a degree in graphic design & fine art from Paier College of Art. She has spent many years teaching art to children through after school programs in Cheshire, at her own Lil Moe Studio, and the Farmington Valley Arts Center in Avon. Her personal philosophy on art making is simply that every individual should create work that gives a feeling of self-satisfaction, and this underpins her teaching as well as the varied art that she creates in her free time.

Session 2: July 14, 15, and 16
Project: Intro to Origami

Step into the world of origami, with Dorigami! Just as the NBMAA displays works from different art movements—impressionism, modernism, realism, abstract—students will learn to fold a variety of pieces to surpass the collections in the galleries! The class will teach simplistic fold bases that will allow students to build up to more challenging modular origami projects.

Artist-in-Residence Dori Melowicz
Self-taught in the ancient Japanese art of origami, Dori Melowicz has been folding for over 20 years. She submitted a piece for the 2001 Moscow Origami Peace Tree Project, is affiliated with Origami USA, and more recently certified the authenticity of what may be the largest butterfly ever folded, pending the Guinness World Records decision. Dori has taught various levels of origami at the Newington Public Library, the Farmington Valley Arts Center, and within the West Hartford Public School system.

Session 3: July 21, 22, and 23
Project: Superheroes on Strings

Delve into the wonderful world of string puppetry as you create a complete Czech-style marionette with Robin McCahill. She’ll bring her own handmade puppets to share all of the imaginative possibilities, and you’ll get to work in a variety of media to design a superhero sidekick for yourself! Take inspiration from our colossal comic collage or your own personal hero or heroine. Upon completion of the project, Robin will show you how to skillfully operate your creation before you set off bravely into the world together.

Artist-in-Residence Robin McCahill
Robin McCahill fell in love with fibers and yarns in early childhood. She teaches the artistic properties of felting to adults and children at various schools, craft fairs, and colleges as well as private workshops around the state. A master of the medium, she makes stuffed animals, figures, puppets, ornaments, garments, masks, paintings, sculptures, and even furniture using felting techniques as well as other elements and media.

Session 4: July 28, 29, and 30
Project: Collage with the Masters

Rub shoulders with Henri Rousseau, Henri Matisse, and Salvador Dalí as you snip, layer, and paste your way to a masterful work in collage. Learn why Matisse had so much fun with this medium while you take inspiration from Rousseau’s jungles and Dalí’s dreams. You’ll be amazed at what scissors can do when you set them loose on colorful and printed papers to create wild scenes of incredible texture and depth.

Artist-in-Residence Mary Smeallie
Mary Smeallie is a veteran artist and an arts instructor. She currently teaches art at the elementary level for the Berlin Public Schools. She is a juried member of the Connecticut Watercolor Society and the West Hartford Art League, and teaches watercolor for adults at the NBMAA. Mary maintains a studio at her home in West Hartford, where she paints, prints, and makes all sorts of fabulous art all year round.

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