Friday, May 28, 2010

Mountainfilm Gallery Walk Tonight!

The Ah Haa School is excited to be a part of the Mountainfilm Gallery Walk tonight from 3:30 to 6:30pm. On our front deck you can see Anthony Holbrooke’s intricate and varied marble sculptures. In our East Room gallery you can view the works of Charlotta Janssen whose depictions of the Freedom Riders cleverly incorporate original photographs. Finally, the Daniel Tucker Gallery is filled with the breathtakingly vibrant (and sometimes heartbreaking) photography of the International League of Conservation Photographers. Be sure to stop by the historic depot to view these three amazing exhibits!

Friday, May 21, 2010

Summer is exploding with kids classes at the Ah Haa!

Pablo Picasso once said, “Every child is an artist, the problem is how to remain an artist once we grown up." I came across this quote a few months ago, while our staff was busy crafting our largest catalogue yet, this summer's 2010 catalogue. When I got to the kids section, I remembered this quote and decided to make this summer's catalogue the answer to that question, or as close to it as I could come anyway. The more we worked on the catalogue, the equation became simple: amazing instructors (the ones that excite and inspire), combined with free and open projects (the ones that allow kids to really soar) and seasoned with a rainbow of different artistic disciplines (the kind which adult artists use for making sense of the world around them). This was the equation. Treat everyone like an artist and give them room to run.

I think that the reason why adults sometimes fail to "remain artists", as Picasso puts it, is because we fail to remain kids. We replace responsibility for our mortgage, or our jobs, with responsibility for our hearts, or the exercizing of our imagination. I was a classroom teacher for the six years prior to my time at Ah Haa and when creating that kids portion of our catalogue, I've often had to fight against my "adult-teacher" instinct to map out all the learning that will take place in each class.

How do I do that?

I help out in classes, where I can hang out with kids and watch my wonderful open instructors work towards smiles and imagination. I ask kids what they're making and listen and where their inspiration comes from, no matter how much sense it makes. Most of all, I ask my adult artists. They don't need to try and think like kids....they never really left.

Come to the Ah Haa this summer. 150 kids classes and 60 adult classes. Reconnect with your imagination.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Ready, set, create! Let's get the summer started!

It's almost here! I can smell summer in the air. Each day the trees get a little greener, the river gets a little higher and the beauty that surrounds us beckons us to come out to play and to create! In less than one week, the Ah Haa School will be in full swing for the summer season. This is my favorite time of year when the school is just brimming with activity and the energy here is amazing! I absolutely love to look around at the kids’ faces while they’re painting or sculpting or gluing. Whether they’re focused in concentration or smiling from ear to ear, these kids are connecting with their creative, imaginative side – and loving it.

There are so many kids and adult classes and workshops, activities for the family, visiting artist programs and monthly rotating artist exhibitions planned at the school all summer long. Of course, the don’t miss event of the summer the Annual Art Auction on July 23rd! The Ah Haa School will be utilizing every nook and cranny of its renovated space at the Depot, on the edge of the San Miguel River, to provide a great experience for kids and adults of all ages and let their imaginations blossom!

Come by and participate and explore the worlds of Ah Haa, where individuals connect to their imaginations, artists connect to our community and the community can connect to the arts!

A world of creativity and imagination awaits you this summer at the Ah Haa School! See you in a class soon.

Rachel Lee
Executive Director