December 9, 2009

Through The Enchanted Gate: MoMA's Kid Art TV Show

I've worked with MoMA in various ways for almost twenty years now, but I only really became aware of the incredible legacy of Victor d'Amico since having a kid. He oversaw the education programs at the Modern for decades, including many artmaking programs and resources for kids. Creativity and individual, hands-on experience were seen then as keys to understanding modern art. And thanks to MoMA's efforts, this "My kid could make that!" combination of modernism, egalitarianism, and freedom became a key element of American export culture during the Cold War. Jacqueline Kennedy organized for one of the Museum's Children's Art Carnivals to travel to India in 1962. [Wait, children's art carnival??]

For domestic consumption, meanwhile, d'Amico produced Through The Enchanted Gate, an awesome & hokey artmaking TV show for kids and parents. It aired on NBC in 1952. Try it at home!

Nice history/backgroundMaking Art at MoMA [moma.org]
2007 exhibition on the Education Programs through 1969 [moma.org]
d'oh, mine was $3: d'Amico & MoMA's 1960 how-to book, Art for the Family is $45 and up [amazon]

1 Comment

I'd heard of The Enchanted Gate before, but I've never seen a show. I have to admit that Victor d'Amico is new to me. I guess I'm not very cultured. :-)

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