Presentation of the programs for the 2006-2007 school year

For children and young adults ages 3-18, the MACBA offers a permanent cycle of tours/workshops during the academic year, some of which include visits to temporary exhibitions (Pablo Palzuelo, Gego, and Carlos Pazos).

A Museum guide takes a group of children or young adults on a tour of the Collection in hopes that direct contact with the works on display will stimulate them, and help them to understand the different artistic forms through a critical and reflexive perspective. Each tour is tailored to the group's ages and abilities.

The guided gallery tours for elementary-aged children count on supporting materials that help along the different activities. They stimulate the participants by making them the center of the activity, thus promoting active participation, and encouraging them to hone their skills of observation, reflection and dialogue, experimentation, creation, and evaluation. The supporting materials, including a variety of objects and artifacts related to the works, are meant to be touched and manipulated by the children, giving them a tactile experience to compensate for not being able to touch the works on display in the Museum. There is no single relationship between the supporting materials and the art, so many associations can be established according to each individual's experience.

The guided gallery tours for Jr. High and High School students help to make the works meaningful and intelligible, breaking with the pre-conceived notion that Museum visits are just another boring look at some art. Using analysis and reflection, we want the students to form their own criteria, connecting parts of their world with that of the Museum, and understanding that artistic practice is not only for the elite, nor are those practices isolated and self-insulated.

The limited timeframe of each tour effects how thoroughly we can cover certain aspects, and for that we have created two educational projects that aim to pick up the slack by offering resources to work in the classroom so that enough time is given to discuss questions that come up during the guided tour but were not able to be resolved on the spot. Before the tour, schools are given a few questions about Contemporary Art that later, when students visit the galleries, become part of their contact with different works in the MACBA Collection. We know, though, that it is not easy to depart from regular topics of discussion and that merely proposing to do so is not enough to learn how to appreciate Contemporary Art without prejudice.