Not A Typical Field Trip

Artists Education Staff Visitors Youth

Students at Chicago Public Schools experience the MCA through the lens of artist-led tours, introducing new perspectives and conversations.

And for those Chicago Public Schools, we provide free busing, which is just an amazing, I think—Sort of removing the burden of the transportation and cost from schools, when schools are already so embattled, and so—where they're having to count every dollar that goes towards instructional resources. To be able to provide this free bus transportation and free artist-led tours for CPS is, I think, one of the ways we feel that the museum is contributing to Chicago youth. And so every year, 10,000 kids. Our artist guides are 13 interdisciplinary artists working in Chicago today, and they are sort of the conduit to the MCA. They are the ambassadors for these young people. And for many of the kids that we see, they're the first artists that they've ever met. And how cool is that for a young person, to come into a space, and to know that, "Oh, this isn't some regular old field trip that my teacher signed us up for. I'm here. For the next hour, I'm in the company of this really cool artist, and all we're doing is looking at great art and talking about great art. And this person wants to hear what I have to say.”

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Video still, Behind the Scenes at an Art Museum. © MCA Chicago.

Behind the Scenes

MCA staff members are interviewed in 1997 about their work. Interviews include Torri Johnson, security officer; Margaret Farr, assistant director of education; Pablo Helguera, coordinator of public programs; Dominic Molon,. . . more
1990s Community Education Staff