From Lessons in the Garden to Art via Streaming: “Let’s reopen the museums for the students”

22 January 2021

By Vera Mantengoli

There are lots of activities that one could do at closed museums, starting with lessons in the gardens, such as that of the Museum of Natural History or the one at Ca’Rezzonico and, why not, in the courtyard of the Palazzo Ducale.

The proposal put forward by the City Councilor for Tutta la Città insieme!, Giovanni Andrea Martini, to allow teachers to give lessons in the museums, has been welcomed positively by the museums, by the Regional Scholastic Directorate and also by some school administrators, such as Cecilia Martinelli of the Liceo artistico Guggenheim.

Under the current Dpcm (Covid restrictions) classes cannot take field trips, but in a city like Venice, where vehicular transportation is not essential and movement is on foot, perhaps an exception could be made.

The Director of the Fondazione Musei Civici, Gabriella Belli has expressed her openness to the idea. “For now the ministry’s ordinance forbids schools from taking field trips, but if that changes, and the proper security measures are taken, we are open to welcoming classes”, explained Gabriella Belli, who will speak next week at the second and final meeting regarding the future of the museums, in an online session.

“Regarding teachers coming into the museums to give lessons via streaming in front of the works of art in Venetian museums – continues the director of the Fondazione Musei Civici – there are no problems, and once organized it could be done”.

The idea is to, even with the museums closed, allow teachers to enter the museums and teach about the works of art in a live stream. In this way the students could get to know a different city museum every week, but still remain at home.

“The idea of a teacher teaching about a work at the museum is lovely – explains administrator Cecilia Martinelli – It would be even nicer to bring the entire class, but actually there would be practical problems, such as fitting it into the triennial training program, and also with the rules”.

“However, for example at the liceo Guggenheim we are just a few minutes from Ca’ Rezzonico and the Gallerie dell’Accademia – continues the director – and we would not need to use transportation to get there, but the epidemiologists have to weigh in on this. I believe it would certainly do the kids some good, maybe in small groups”.

The proposal from Giovanni Andrea Martini arrived after weeks of debate against the closure of the museums imposed by Mayor Luigi Brugnaro in light of the absence of tourists, and opposed by the city, which is asking that the residents be taken into consideration, and therefore to have some days when the main museums are open.

“In this period we could do a great many things – said Giovanni Andrea Martini – In addition to teachers, why not organize visits conducted by the same museum workers who are now forced to stay at home?”.

                                    Giovanni Andrea Martini

Projects aimed at students have been active for some time now at Palazzo Grassi, with Teens, and at the Collezione Guggenheim with SuperaMenti, not counting the alternation of school and work that will recommence if we return to the Yellow Zone (for Covid levels).

“The proposal of a teacher teaching about the works in the museum is in line with our philosophy of educating the public about the value of the artistic process – said the director of the Guggenheim, Karole P.B. Vail – Now we have remote labs with the artists in SuperaMenti, and workshops dedicated to instructors starting on the 27th on the subject of beauty”.

Source: La Nuova Venezia

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