This unique space features more than 40 interactive exhibits, which complement the Museum’s permanent collection of American art. The ARTWORKS exhibits, many of which were designed by local and regional artists, explore the elements of art, art history, materials, techniques, and visual and tactile perception. To add to your experience in ARTWORKS, guided tours, educational backpacks, studio activities, and ongoing art classes are available for children and adults.
ARTWORKS has been a dynamic learning center since it was initiated by the Junior League of Montgomery in the 1980s. Following the Museum expansion project, ARTWORKS reopened in 2006 with almost double the space and many new exhibits.
Check out the Museum’s new Education Backpacks for elementary students and their families. Backpacks include imaginative activities to guide you through the museum galleries. To check one out visit the ARTWORKS gallery, and look for an ARTWORKS supervisor. Visitors are required to leave a driver’s license in order to check out a backpack.
ARTWORKS is filled with numerous interactive galleries and computer stations. Below is a list of the highlights:
- Marking the entrance to ARTWORKS, the colorful illusionistic wall painting by Stephen Cappelli and corresponding block sculpture by Jennie Zehmer.
- The Make a Print, Take a Print stamp machine and display of printmaking techniques, with prints by Zarouhie Abdalian.
- Color Me in Motion, the psychedelic, ever-changing projections of YOUR image on the large screen, created by Ed Tannenbaum.
- Five desktop computer stations and four touchscreen kiosks, each with a different art related program.
- Hopper in Perspective, a 3-D interpretation of the famous painting, New York Office, by Edward Hopper.
- The Talladega Three Race Track, providing hours of fun while tracing the color lines and movements in the reproduction of Frank Stella’s Talladega Three/II.
- Bunny in Bronze, demonstrating the lost wax process used in casting Frank Fleming’s bronze rabbit.
- Three different interactive exhibits inside a replica of the Museum, created by the Alabama Shakespeare Festival scene shop.
- The Spiral Texture Wall, designed by Tara Sartorius and created by more than 700 individuals from the Montgomery community.
- The Upper Crust area with puppets, blocks, and books for imaginative play.
The ARTWORKS interactive gallery has a strong educational focus, and is used regularly for weekly school tours and other large groups. As a result, we ask that visitors with 10 or more participants make a reservation at least 48 hours in advance. Please wait for confirmation from museum staff before planning your visit. To make a reservation fill out our online form or call 334.2404359.
The ARTWORKS Corridor is primarily devoted to student art exhibitions that change every 4-16 weeks. Most student exhibitions relate directly to temporary exhibitions in the main Museum galleries. Occasionally this area houses exhibitions of works by a single artist, or of a special nature, or winners from statewide contests. The ARTWORKS Corridor art can be an excellent transition to and from the main galleries, ARTWORKS or the studio.
Discover how your students may exhibit their artwork at the Museum. Student exhibitions in the ARTWORKS Corridor are designed to go hand-in-hand with art in the galleries. Detailed guidelines and entry forms are available by request. A jury of art professionals selects works for each show. Contact Assistant Curator of Education, Donna Pickens, 334.240.4363 or firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
Confronting the Issues
Exhibition connection: History Refused to Die: Alabama’s African – American Self Taught Artists in Context
This exhibition will examine the African-American experience in Alabama as seen through the works of sixteen African-American artists with roots in the state. Coinciding with the 50th anniversary of the Selma-to-Montgomery March, the works in the exhibition interpret the mid-twentieth century’s social and political environment that shaped or defined the struggle for equal rights. To learn more download the ARTWORKS Corridor Flyer.
Works Due: Friday, March 6, 2015
Exhibition Dates: March 19 – May 3, 2015
Eligibility: High School through College
Project: Participants are invited to create works of art that address issues of poverty, homelessness, equality, and social justice, using any two or three dimensional technique or art media.
Size: Submitted artwork may be no larger than 18 x 24″, although it may be smaller than this size. Entries may be matted, mounted, or framed. Please use only white or off – white mats. Artwork that is not matted or framed will be displayed in the Museum’s plexiglass frames. Three-dimensional work may NOT exceed 6 inches in depth and must be ready to hang on the wall.
Student Art Collection
Since 1990, the Montgomery Museum of Fine Arts has featured student exhibitions in the ARTWORKS Corridor, a gallery prominently located at the entrance of the museum, adjacent to the ARTWORKS hands-on galleries.
The exhibition themes coincide with temporary exhibitions featured at the museum. Calls for entries and detailed guidelines are sent quarterly to teachers in the area. A committee of curators and professional artists selects artwork from as many as 300 entries, and at least one artwork is selected from each school and/or teacher. An average of 45 works are chosen for each exhibition.
The museum has purchased artwork from many of the Corridor exhibitions, to create a substantial permanent student art collection. Artwork submitted to the Department of Education exhibition was selected from the permanent student art collection. The artworks were made by elementary, junior high, and high school artists.
The ARTWORKS Corridor program has increased in popularity since 1990, with entries sent from around the state. Exhibition guidelines encourage teachers to develop lesson plans revolving around Museum exhibitions, and students become engaged with the artwork on display by creating their own response.
Frequently over 100 students and family members attend the Artworks Corridor opening receptions, which coincide with the openings of related Museum exhibitions.
Possibly the most important impact of the ARTWORKS Corridor program is the students’ increased self-esteem when their artwork is displayed in one of the most prominent Museum locations. These exhibitions give a message to the community that the Museum values the creative expressions of students, and encourages visitors to thoughtfully consider their artwork.