In July, the museum’s education department held two workshops to familiarize teachers with the exhibition Georgia O’Keeffe and Ansel Adams: The Hawai‘i Pictures, show them how to integrate the artwork into classroom learning, and demonstrate an art activity—how to make a sun print  that students can do. In addition teachers go to tour the exhibition with Theresa Papanikolas, the museum’s curator of European and American art who curated the show.

The first workshop was so popular that a second was quickly organized for July 20. Eleven educators attended, getting an exhibition overview in the museum’s education lecture hall, then moving to Kinau Courtyard to learn about photography basics from education assistant and artist Andi Charuk, who illustrated the way that Ansel Adams worked on a vintage camera similar to the one the American master would have used. Then Andi had the teachers choose materials—leaves, flowers, ribbons, curled pipe cleaners—to place over paper and make a small sunprint.

Phyllis Gurlen, who teaches Hawaiian history at Wai‘anae Intermediate School, said that she liked that the art had a message of “going back to nature,” and appreciated the workshop tips on inexpensive ways to get students involved in the exhibition. According to Lori-Ann Ambrocewicz, who teaches first grade at Punahou School, the school is trying to integrate more art into the curriculum. “Our unit this year is about studying the land, which works well with the exhibition,”  she said. “I was excited to learn about it.”

The workshops were funded by a grant from the Hawai‘i Council for the Humanities. Now the education department is gearing up for the second phase of the community outreach program—with school back in session, the project goal is for teachers to bring students to see the exhibition, then make art inspired by what they see, and submit photographs of their work to be included in an online exhibition here.

Teachers select items with which to make a sunprint.

Punahou School first-grade teacher Lori-Ann Ambrocewicz makes a sunprint.


Developing the teachers’ sunprint masterpieces

Teachers get an in-depth gallery session with Betsy Robb, director of tour and docent programs