GREENSBORO, N.C. -- It's not your typical art gallery crowd, but every Friday, a group of small children take over the GreenHill Center for NC Art in Downtown Greensboro.
“There's probably a lot of apprehension when you have a young child about going into an art gallery or an art museum,” said Laura Maruzzella, GreenHill’s art educator. “You're afraid they might touch something or break something and this makes it friendlier and safer for those parents.
The children are participating in a unique program called “Masterpiece Friday.”
Armed with lollipops, the kids take a tour of the galleries, read a story and then play a few games such as “I Spy,” to learn how to interact with the artwork.
Elizabeth Hall has taken her two children, Oliver, 2, and Naomi, 5, to "Masterpiece Friday" several times and it’s always a hit.
“It`s been interesting to see such young kids who generally pay attention something for about a nanosecond really zero in and focus and have ideas and stay with something for a long time,” she said.
But moms and kids seem to agree, the highlight of the day is much more hands on. It's messy too. The kids paint, cut, sculpt and glue art projects.
“The parents don`t have to worry about 'what if my child makes a mess' or ‘what if my child has a tantrum?’ That`s part of early childhood we understand that and we have a space for that in this program.” Said Maruzzella. “The goal of 'Masterpiece Friday' is to really start off their experience in the gallery and in an art studio as a positive one.”
Admission to Masterpiece Friday is free with a membership or $6 per person.
Learn more here.