"Use this network for your pupils. One topic – many different forms of engaging with the various museums."
Regina Selter, Museum Ostwall im Dortmunder U
Following the area's appointment as European City of Culture 2010 under the RUHR.2010 campaign and the cross-city "Collection Tours" culture mediation programme, which provided guided art tours in the museums of the Metropolis Ruhr for both young and old, it was decided: the successful agreement concluded between the RuhrKunstMuseen to provide artistic education and mediation should be further developed. In the long term. For future generations. To ensure the promotion of creative thought, animated actions and the participation of people of all ages, and that the development of sensory-based abilities is not simply left to fate.
Where else does the future begin than with the youngest among us? This means: throwing ourselves into culture with hearts and minds, encouraging schools to take a different approach. To experience art against a museum backdrop, to provide children with tools to help them stand on their own two feet. The RuhrKunstMuseen looked towards the future: how can art institutions in the Metropolis Ruhr support teaching staff when it comes to promoting the art and media skills of their pupils? How can what the museums offer with regard to educational work be presented? In a manner which is handy, practical, simple and manageable?
The educational matrix, recently developed by a working group for cultural mediation and education, presents a general map of the mediation services provided by each of the RuhrKunstMuseen. It can serve as a guide and an aid when planning, as well as providing an overview of which different art and art history courses are offered in which museums and which can thus be booked "in one go". Green dots on the map of creative activities mark the museum-based educational focuses of the exhibition centre in question. For example, 17 RuhrKunstMuseen offer workshops on "Light and colour", while 15 museums are specialised in "Figuration and abstraction". With the educational matrix in hand, the variety of media-literate courses on offer can be seen as a network of dialogue-based, interactive, artistic, and hands-on mediation strategies.
The educational matrix displays the 16 different topics which are on offer across 20 RuhrKunstMuseen, each adapted to fit the corresponding type of school and year group. These topics include "Landscape and culture", "Museum backstage", "Material and technology", "Photography" and "Art and movement". All schools are invited to experience just how exciting it is to investigate the same topic in different art galleries with different mediation teams, taking new examples of works and exploring them from different perspectives. Personalised tours, exciting debates, workshops and much more are included in the cultural and educational toolbox that is the 20 x 16 educational matrix.
And that's not all: to ensure the provision of a professional level of visitor-oriented art mediation, the educational matrix has put together an entire further education package. Providing traditional classroom teaching in museums? Forget it – the only thing that makes this any different from staying at school is that pupils get slightly more exercise from walking around. A less traditional approach is the type of learning which takes place without you even realising it. True to the motto: approaching art – not for you, but with you. Open and unbiased. Dialogue-driven. All in the form of a hands-on, individual experience which shows how previously unimaginable worlds and lateral thinking can take place through art. The educational matrix and a specially-trained museum education system provide you with the timetable best suited to your needs.
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