Laguna Art Museum makes art accessible by expanding educational opportunities

Laguna Art Museum continues its mission to connect the community to art with educational partnerships and new programming for all ages. From a free admission program and in-school workshops to the new Lit to Life series, the museum offers a variety of opportunities to learn about Californian art and artists.

“We are on a mission to connect the next generation to the arts through programs, partnerships and the museum’s free admission program for children,” said Julie Perlin Lee, Executive Director of the Laguna Art Museum. “We want children and families to feel like they have a place in the museum, where they can explore and experience first-hand how art can enrich their lives.”

Opportunities for families to explore the museum are offered through monthly programming and the Kids Free Admission Program, where free admission is offered to children under 12 years of age.

“The museum is delighted to receive a generous grant from the Segerstrom Foundation to continue allowing children under 12 to explore the museum for free,” said Perlin Lee. “The Kids Free Admission Program is a great way to bring families together for a cultural experience at the museum.”

While at the museum, families can visit the LAM LAB, a permanent creative space for learners of all ages. The LAB at LAM is a space for exploration and play where children become artists, letting their imaginations be inspired by the art of museum exhibits and community events. The space is also used for school visits and special events. Funds to reinvent the LAB at LAM have been received from the Offield Family Foundation, which will help create a more inclusive, artist-designed, and user-friendly space for unique experiences only found at the Laguna Art Museum.

On Saturday, April 16, the museum will present Look Up!, an artistic collaboration with the Boys & Girls Club of Laguna Beach and award-winning artist Elizabeth Turk, at LAM’s LAB. Turk previously worked with the Laguna Art Museum during the 2018 Art & Nature Festival, where his Shoreline Project brought together 1,000 volunteers for a site-specific performance in Laguna Beach. Looking up! The community video project aims to bring children and families together under the guise of an immersive artistic experience. Filmed from above, participants twirl, dance and parade with colorful umbrellas to represent pixels in moving kaleidoscopic works of art. Then, visitors can create their own works of art with a creative project aimed at children and families. Look for! will be visible at the museum until June 19.

Every fourth Saturday of the month, the Laguna Art Museum brings literature to life with the new family series Lit to Life. Held at LAM’s LAB, Lit to Life sessions include interactive storytelling, an art-making project inspired by a work or museum exhibit, gallery activities, and mindfulness exercises that promote understanding by children about the role of art in their lives.

Taking art out of the museum, the Laguna Art Museum brings art to local students through its longstanding partnership with the Laguna Beach Unified School District (LBUSD). To keep students safe during the pandemic, the museum has offered virtual art classes until in-person instruction resumes in March 2022. More than 600 elementary students are benefiting from the program, which provides students with monthly sessions that integrate the museum’s exhibitions and permanent collection. The program with LBUSD runs through May 2022, and museum staff are working diligently to improve programming for the upcoming school year and beyond.

For more information about the Laguna Art Museum, educational opportunities and programs, visit lagunaartmuseum.org. To stay connected and find out about upcoming events, follow the museum on Facebook, instagramand Twitter.

Mildred D. Field